Last year in the UK over 60,000 cancer patients enrolled on clinical trials aimed at improving cancer treatments and making them available to all.
A trial looking at treatment to stop non small cell lung cancer coming back after surgery (LU22)
Non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) that is found at an early stage is treated most successfully with surgery. But there is a risk that the cancer can come back some time after the operation.
The aim of this trial was to see whether giving chemotherapy before surgery reduced the risk of the cancer coming back later.
Summary of results
In this trial, the researchers found that having chemotherapy before surgery made no difference to how often lung cancer came back.
This was a randomised trial. It recruited 519 people who had non small cell lung cancer that was stage 1, 2 or 3. Half the people had surgery alone and half had chemotherapy, followed by surgery.
The trial team followed the progress of the people who took part for an average of nearly 3 and a half years. They found that lung cancer had grown or come back in about a third of the people in both groups.
The researchers pointed out that some studies have shown chemotherapy can help some people, and that other trials were still going on. They suggest that when the results of the various trials are looked at all together, they may show which people might benefit from having chemotherapy before surgery.
We have based this summary on information from the team who ran the trial. The information they sent us has been reviewed by independent specialists (
How to join a clinical trial
Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.
Dr Ian Smith
Dr David Gilligan
Medical Research Council (MRC)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer