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February 1971

Carcinoma of the LungA Comparative Series of 687 Cases

Author Affiliations

Des Moines, Iowa
From the Department of Surgery, Veterans Administrations Hospital, Des Moines, Iowa (Drs. Lince and Lulu) and the University of Iowa College of Medicine, Iowa City (Dr. Lulu). Dr. Lince is presently in private practice in San Antonio, Tex.

Arch Surg. 1971;102(2):103-107. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1971.01350020013004

When the results of treatment in 687 patients with carcinoma of the lung were analyzed, the beneficial effect of greatly improved diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic modalities in recent years was disappointingly low. The carcinomas of over 60% of the patients were inoperable when first seen and less than half of those remaining were resectable. Cough and pain remained the most common presenting complaints. The right upper lobe was the most commonly involved site and squamous cell the most common variety. X-ray films and bronchoscopy were the most valuable diagnostic aids and scalene node biopsy was the most valuable prognostic aid. The average survival rates related to the form of treatment were two months with no treatment, five months with chemotherapy, six months with x-ray therapy, nine months with x-ray therapy and chemotherapy, and 17 months with resectional therapy in those surviving operation.