A lung cancer diagnosis is not a death sentence. Treatment options, including state-of-the-art robotic surgery, are available and saving lives every day.
Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Institute does the most robotic lung cancer surgeries in Louisiana each year, and we also offer the most comprehensive and robust care for lung cancer. Emily Cassidy, MD, thoracic surgeon with Our Lady of the Lake Physician Group, helps us understand the surgical technology and its benefits.
Why Robotic Surgery
Many patients aren’t aware that lung cancer can be surgically removed, much less in a minimally invasive way, but our exceptional team does so regularly.
The benefits of robotic surgery are numerous. The biggest ones for patients include smaller incisions, less pain, shorter hospital stays and fewer complications.
Screening is Key
Getting screened for lung cancer is critical, as finding the cancer at an earlier stage improves outcomes. Across our health system our goal is to cause a stage shift, so that lung cancers will be diagnosed in earlier stages.
A CT scan is non-invasive. Other regular cancer screenings, such as colonoscopies and mammograms, involve discomfort, but a lung cancer screening does not and only involves lying still for a few minutes.
At Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Institute in Baton Rouge, an incidental lung nodule program is helping to identify more patients with lung cancer at earlier stages, before they have symptoms. Every week a multidisciplinary team of experts gathers to review possibly worrying CT scans of lung nodules that were taken for some other reason, such as in the emergency department. Since starting in spring 2021, the program has identified patients with lung cancer earlier to put them on a path for recovery.
Robust, Comprehensive Care
More treatments are becoming available for advanced-stage lung cancer as well. Immunotherapies and other targeted therapies have really changed the way we treat lung cancer in later stages and so we see improved outcomes.
That type of comprehensive care can be found at our Cancer Institute and is available today.
“We’ve worked hard to make sure we have every single piece of the puzzle in place to optimally diagnose and treat lung cancer so we can reassure our patients: we have everything you need right here in Baton Rouge,” Dr. Cassidy says.