Lung Cancer 101 & Integrative Medicine - VHS


Lung Cancer 101 & Integrative Medicine   (Cancer Educ. PT 3)


Dr. Alicia McKelvey & Dr. John Federico, Thoracic Surgeons
Ms. Debra Scully – Manager, Integrative Medicine
McGivney Cancer Center

Part 1: Risks for Developing Lung Cancer:

  •        Tobacco use
  •        Exposure to second-hand smoke
  •        Asbestos Exposure
  •        History of a previous non-lung cancer

Lung Cancer Symptoms:
  •       Persistent Cough
  •       Shortness of Breath
  •       Pain (in various areas depending on specific nature of the disease)
  •       Coughing up blood
  •       Weight loss and malaise
  •       Pneumonia that won’t clear up (lasts for a prolonged period)

What kind of work-up is done for lung cancer & how is it diagnosed?
Diagnosis and work-up of lung cancer go hand in hand.
a) Most often someone gets a chest xray that shows an abnormality
b) This prompts a CT Scan of the chest (an x-ray that gives 3-dimentional info)
c) A Bronschoscopy (looking inside the airways with a fiberoptic scope) is often done
d) If any lymph glands in the chest are suspicious for being involved, they are biopsied  

Part 2:  Integrative Medicine & Wellness Group

1. Integrative Medicine incorporates treatment of:
         a. Mind, body and spirit.
         b. Combines the best of traditional & complementary medicine
         c. Focuses on the whole person
         d. Addresses physical, mental, emotional & spiritual needs
         e. Offers a complete circle of care

2.  Lung Cancer is divided into four stages:  I, II, III & IV.   Stage IV is Metastatic.  This means the disease has spread to other areas of the body.

Treatment options are based on the stage of the disease at the time of diagnosis.
  •   Treatment for Stage IV - when the disease has metastacized (meaning it has spread to other organs such as the brain, liver and bones) consists of chemotherapy, sometimes radiation, and sometimes palliation/comfort care depending on how sick the person is.

  •   Stage I & II are early stages; the tumor is confined to the lung.  

Surgery is the main treatment for cure.

  •  Stage III is when there are lymph nodes in the middle of the chest that have evidence of cancer in them.  Treatemt is chemotherapy, radiation, and sometimes followed by surgery.

3. HSR has an active Integrative Medical program in CT.  Goals are to:
        a. Bring about significant healing for lung cancer patients
        b. Reduce symptoms such as pain, fatigue, and dyspnea
        c. Teach special coping skills
        d. Invoke relaxation response to short circuit stress

4. Research shows more people with cancer use complementary medicine

5. Greatest challenge for many is the fear & anxiety of living with uncertainty.

Contact Information for Father McGivney Cancer Center: (203) 789- 3131 or 789 – 3111    Web site:

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This product was added to our catalog on Friday 11 September, 2009.

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