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Vol 3, No 3 (2004): Polish Palliative Medicine
Artykuły poglądowe
Published online: 2004-04-27
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Haematological complications in lung cancer patients

Marek Z. Wojtukiewicz, Piotr Tokajuk
Advances in Palliative Medicine 2004;3(3):243-264.

open access

Vol 3, No 3 (2004): Polish Palliative Medicine
Artykuły poglądowe
Published online: 2004-04-27

Abstract

Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death in Poland, resulting in more deaths than the next three most common cancers combined (colon cancer, breast cancer and prostate cancer). Unfortunately, despite significant progress in cancer therapy in recent years, the expected 5-year survival rate for all patients in whom lung cancer is diagnosed ranges from 6–8%. The chemotherapy, radiotherapy and, particularly, chemo-radiotherapy protocols applied to patients with lung cancer are associated with severe toxicity, including haematological complications. These may affect leukocytes, red blood cells and platelets as well as the haemostatic system. In some cases they may be the first clinical manifestation of the disease, preceding the diagnosis of cancer by several months. The occurrence of haematological complications poses restrictions on the administration of chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy within a given time frame and at a specified dose. In addition this can adversely affect performance status and quality of life as well as the survival of lung cancer patients. Careful assessment of the risk of toxicity and of the potential benefits of therapy is vitally important in the treatment of lung cancer patients. Thus, supportive treatment constitutes an important element of lung cancer therapy.

Abstract

Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death in Poland, resulting in more deaths than the next three most common cancers combined (colon cancer, breast cancer and prostate cancer). Unfortunately, despite significant progress in cancer therapy in recent years, the expected 5-year survival rate for all patients in whom lung cancer is diagnosed ranges from 6–8%. The chemotherapy, radiotherapy and, particularly, chemo-radiotherapy protocols applied to patients with lung cancer are associated with severe toxicity, including haematological complications. These may affect leukocytes, red blood cells and platelets as well as the haemostatic system. In some cases they may be the first clinical manifestation of the disease, preceding the diagnosis of cancer by several months. The occurrence of haematological complications poses restrictions on the administration of chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy within a given time frame and at a specified dose. In addition this can adversely affect performance status and quality of life as well as the survival of lung cancer patients. Careful assessment of the risk of toxicity and of the potential benefits of therapy is vitally important in the treatment of lung cancer patients. Thus, supportive treatment constitutes an important element of lung cancer therapy.
Get Citation

Keywords

lung cancer; paraneoplastic syndromes; neutropenia; anaemia; thromboembolism

About this article
Title

Haematological complications in lung cancer patients

Journal

Advances in Palliative Medicine

Issue

Vol 3, No 3 (2004): Polish Palliative Medicine

Pages

243-264

Published online

2004-04-27

Bibliographic record

Advances in Palliative Medicine 2004;3(3):243-264.

Keywords

lung cancer
paraneoplastic syndromes
neutropenia
anaemia
thromboembolism

Authors

Marek Z. Wojtukiewicz
Piotr Tokajuk

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