Endobronchial photodynamic therapy for the treatment of lung cancer

J. M. Metz, J. S. Friedberg

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


After 2 decades of basic research and clinical experience with endobronchial photodynamic therapy, clear indications for its use have arisen. PDT for the treatment of superficial NSCLC is a viable alternative for patients with inoperable lung cancer. Although early indications are that it may be used to spare operable patients an aggressive surgical procedure, this application still should be considered investigational. The standard of care remains surgical resection in the operable patient. PDT may be considered for the palliation of obstructing lesions of the tracheobronchial tree; however, the risk for prolonged sensitivity to sunlight limits its broad application in this patient population. As better screening techniques are introduced, the role of PDT will expand in the future management of superficial lung cancers. Future developments include new photosensitizers with decreased duration of sun sensitivity and greater choice of wavelength to affect depth of penetration, better dosimetry systems for more consistent light delivery and reporting of results, and better light delivery systems for more homogenous distribution of light.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)829-839
Number of pages11
JournalChest Surgery Clinics of North America
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2001


  • Aged
  • Airway Obstruction/etiology
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Dihematoporphyrin Ether/administration & dosage
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms/complications
  • Male
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Palliative Care/methods
  • Photochemotherapy/methods


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