Bronchoscopic treatments for early-stage peripheral lung cancer: Are we ready for prime time?

Lung Cancer

Steinfort DP and Herth FJF. Respirology 2020 - Review.


Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide and surgical lobectomy remains the preferred therapy for patients with early-stage NSCLC. Medical comorbidities and advanced age preclude resection in many patients and minimally invasive ablative therapies are needed for treatment. Stereotactic ablative radiation is established as an effective modality in this patient group, although may be contraindicated in some patients with prior radiation exposure, comorbidities or

centrally positioned tumours. Percutaneous ablative methods are available, although are frequently associated with significant complications. Numerous endoscopic ablative techniques are under evaluation. With a more favourable safety profile and the ability to provide diagnosis and staging information potentially within a single procedure, there is a strong rationale for development of bronchoscopic ablative modalities. In the following article, the authors aim to explore the role bronchoscopic ablation may play in treatment of peripheral lung tumours, and to describe a pathway to establishing these modalities as part of routine care. The current status of several bronchoscopic ablative options is discussed in detail.