Lung Cancer Awareness Month: Biomarker Testing For Lung Cancer

Lung Cancer Awareness Month: Biomarker Testing For Lung Cancer

Advancements in cancer research have given us more information about specific cancer cells in each individual patient. Cancer cells have unique features that can show us why the cells are cancerous. These are called molecular biomarkers and are unique to each individual. Biomarker testing for lung cancer can improve treatments by using medications developed to target those specific cells. These therapies often cause fewer side effects because they focus on the cancer, instead of killing healthy cells too. 

What Is Biomarker Testing For Lung Cancer

Biomarker testing for lung cancer looks for changes in the tumor’s DNA. It can sometimes be referred to as tumor, molecular, or genomic testing. Biomarkers can determine what the cell is and how it reacts to specific treatments. Once tested for biomarkers, your doctor will have an indication of what types of cancer cells are present in a specific tumor. Your doctor will use all of the information from biomarker testing, as well as the cancer type, stage, and the medical history to create a personalized treatment plan. This testing and treatment method gives us hope for increased success rates for not just lung cancer, but all cancers.

We have more information than ever to help treat and target cancers. Traditional treatments for lung cancer have involved chemotherapy, which stops cells from growing and dividing. The problem is that it affects both healthy cells and cancer cells. This is why patients suffer from side effects including hair loss, fatigue, and nausea. In general, personalized medicine uses information about a patient’s cancer and their overall health to better treat their disease. 

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