In Denmark, almost 5,000 new patients are being diagnosed with lung cancer each year. Fortunately, the disease is now diagnosed at earlier stages and surgical resection rates have increased. The paper of Borg et al describes the type of follow-up that is offered to operated lung cancer survivors. The authors also report symptoms, lung function, treatment with inhaled medication and smoking habits in 50 consecutive patients who were seen three months after their lung cancer resection. The study revealed heterogeneous setups regarding spirometry and assessment by a respiratory physician. Many of the patients did not use bronchodilators despite obstructive spirometry. Almost half of them reported shortness of breath and 17% were active smokers. The authors conclude that in addition to focusing on detection of recurrence, an optimal follow-up should also include focus on symptom improvement and smoking cessation.
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Symptoms and lung function follow-up after lung cancer resection
Morten Borg, Anders Løkke & Torben Riis Rasmussen