Efficacy versus safety concerns for aerosol chemotherapy in non-small-cell lung cancer: a future dilemma for micro-oncology

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Abstract

Inhaled chemotherapy was first used more than 30 years ago. Since then, numerous chemotherapeutic agents have been used in either in vitro or in vivo studies. Several aspects of the methodology of the drug administration have been thoroughly demonstrated and explained. However, the safety concerns of these studies were not thoroughly investigated and different results regarding the same drug formulations have been reported. There are cases where the studies failed to demonstrate the long-term effects of the chemotherapeutic drug formulations to the lung parenchyma. Acute and latent effects observed in a small number of human trial studies are still under investigation of inhaled chemotherapy administration. This review provides data regarding all up-to-date inhaled chemotherapy studies and presents the methodological parameters of the safety measures incorporated. In addition, a commentary regarding the safety concerns for the medical staff participating in these studies will be presented.

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