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Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) Treatment Offers New Hope for People with Lung Cancer

In an exciting new study, researchers have shown that radiofrequency ablation (RFA) treatment extends the survival of people with non-small cell primary lung cancer or cancer that spread (metastasized) to the lungs from another part of the body.  On average, people treated with RFA gained an additional two years of life.  RFA uses electrical energy that is delivered through the tip of a needle to a cancerous tumor.  The heat destroys the cancer and closes small blood vessels.  Most people experience only minimal discomfort during the treatment and can return to normal activity in just a few days.
Typically, about two-thirds of people diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer are not candidates for surgery and have less than 12 months life expectancy.  In this study conducted in France at the Institut Gustave Roussy in Vellejuif, 85% of the participants were free of lung tumors after one year of RFA treatment, and 77% after two years of treatment.  The best results occurred for tumors that were smaller than two centimeters.  RFA can even result in a cure for some people.  It appears that RFA may be an exciting treatment option for people that may not be candidates for surgery.  RFA is safe and approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

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