Why is it vital for small cell lung cancer patients to be empowered by cancer experts? Expert Dr. Vinicius Ernani from the Mayo Clinic discusses the power of giving patients hope and the importance of clinical trials.
Dr. Vinicius Ernani:
So I think it’s always important to give the patient hope. It doesn’t matter how aggressive the disease is. I think the patients, they need to have hope to go home and continue moving with their lives. So again, small cell, it’s an aggressive disease, yes, but it responds very well to treatment. And now, we know that immunotherapy is there, it improves survival. We know that about 10 percent, 12 percent of the…50 percent of the patients are alive at one year after they start treatment. If you look at two years, there’s about 20 percent of the patients are alive. And if we look at five years, there’s about 10 percent of the patients that are alive with small cell. So we are seeing some progress with immunotherapy.
And again, I encourage, this is a disease that responds very quickly. It’s going to make you feel better very soon. I think that any patient with extensive stage small cell lung cancer deserves to be treated. And again, there’s more clinical trials coming with the immunotherapy, with the antibody drug conjugates. So hopefully, we’re going to continue to move the needle in small cell lung cancer.