A newly developed technique called robotic bronchoscopy allows doctors to reach the far reaches of the lung and detect and treat cancer.
A new robotic technology has been developed that can detect lung cancer early and treat it at the same time, according to a report released Tuesday by CBS Philadelphia. In the report published by the American Lung Association, it was revealed that the survival rate from lung cancer increased thanks to this new technology.
“I’m very optimistic about my future,” explains Kathleen McGinn, one of the first people to have this technique applied and cancer found at an early stage and treated with a robotic procedure. The new technology is called robotic bronchoscopy. Thanks to this new technology, doctors are able to reach small, remote areas of the lung that they cannot reach with normal instruments.
Main Line Health’s Dr. Patrick Ross describes it as “revolutionary” because it enables early detection of cancer and at the same time allows cancer to be treated. All procedures are performed while the patient is under anesthesia. When patients wake up, they are cured of cancer.
High-risk patients need to be screened
Currently, the new technology is mainly used on those who need a biopsy for a lung mass, but doctors say anyone at high risk should be screened. It is underlined that lung cancer can occur in healthy people who have never smoked. Currently, it is estimated that up to 20% of people with lung cancer have never smoked and contracted the disease from other risk factors such as secondhand smoke, air pollution and radon gas (the second leading cause of cancer).