BACKGROUND: We aimed to assess the uptake of minimally invasive surgery (MIS) and stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) among early stage (stage IA-IIB) non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) cases in the USA, and the rate of conversions from MIS to open surgery. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Data were obtained from the US National Cancer Database, a nationwide facility-based cancer registry capturing up to 70% of incident cancer cases in the USA. We included cases diagnosed with early stage (clinical stages IA-IIB) NSCLC between 2010 and 2014. In an ecological analysis, we assessed changes in treatment by year of diagnosis. Among surgically treated cases, we assessed the uptake of MIS and whether conversion to open surgery took place. For cases that received thoracic radiotherapy, we assessed the uptake of SBRT. RESULTS: Among 117 370 selected cases, radiotherapy use increased 3.4 percentage points between 2010 and 2014 (p<0.0001). Surgical treatments decreased 3.5 percentage points (p<0.0001). Rates of non-treatment remained stable (range: 10.0%-10.6% (p=0.4066)). Among surgically treated stage IA cases, uptake of MIS increased from 28.7% (95% CI 27.8% to 29.7%) in 2010 to 48.6% (95% CI 47.6% to 49.6%) in 2014 (p<0.0001), while conversions decreased from 17.0% (95% CI 15.6% to 18.6%) in 2010 to 9.1% (95% CI 8.3% to 10.0%) in 2014 (p<0.0001). MIS uptake among stages IB-IIB was lower and conversion rates were higher, but time trends were similar. Uptake of SBRT among stage IA receiving thoracic radiotherapy increased from 53.4% (95% CI 51.2% to 55.6%) in 2010 to 73.0% (95% CI 71.4% to 74.6%) in 2014 (p<0.0001). SBRT uptake among stage IB increased from 32.5% (95% CI 29.9% to 35.2%) in 2010 to 48.2% (95% CI 45.6% to 50.8%) in 2014 (p<0.0001). CONCLUSION: Between 2010 and 2014, uptake of MIS and SBRT among early stage NSCLC significantly increased, while the rate of conversions to open surgery significantly decreased. Continuing these trends may contribute to improving patient care, in particular with the expected increase in early stages due to the implementation of lung cancer screening.

non-small cell lung cancer, thoracic surgery,
BMJ open respiratory research
Department of Public Health

Blom, E.F, ten Haaf, K, D.A. Arenberg (Douglas), & de Koning, H.J. (2020). Uptake of minimally invasive surgery and stereotactic body radiation therapy for early stage non-small cell lung cancer in the USA. BMJ open respiratory research, 7(1). doi:10.1136/bmjresp-2020-000603