We evaluated the 10- to 15-year outcome of 252 patients with small-cell lung cancer entered into therapeutic clinical trials with or without chest and cranial irradiation. Thirty-two patients (13%) survived free of cancer for 2 or more years. Twelve patients (5%) survived at least 10 years free of cancer, and 10 patients are currently alive and free of cancer beyond 10 years. Six of these 10 patients currently function at a level comparable with that before diagnosis. The other 22 patients who were cancer-free at 2 years have died. Nine patients died from recurrent small-cell lung cancer 2 to 6.2 years after initiation of chemotherapy. Five died from non-small-cell lung cancer, three died of other malignancies, and five died of causes other than cancer. A small fraction of patients with small-cell lung cancer are cured of their original malignancy, but these patients remain at high risk for second cancers and death from other causes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research