Has Your Tumor Been Tested for Biomarkers?

Asking for a simple test can expand your treatment options. You may have heard the terms precision or personalized medicine. This is the idea that a person’s tumor has certain characteristics that control the tumor’s behavior (like growth and spread) and some treatments can directly target these characteristics. These characteristics are indicated by specific mutations or biomarkers that can be found by testing your lung tissue.

Be sure to let your doctor know you want your tumor tested using comprehensive biomarker testing. Receiving comprehensive testing along with a standard tissue biopsy will give your doctor a fuller understanding of your particular type of lung cancer so they can suggest the best treatment options for you. Along with knowing the type and stage of your lung cancer, comprehensive biomarker testing is an important part of learning what makes your lung cancer unique so you can go on a treatment plan specifically designed for you. In certain cases, your doctor may not recommend testing your tissue for biomarkers or it may not be possible to safely remove enough tissue for comprehensive biomarker testing. If you have concerns about whether or not you are getting the most appropriate treatment for your specific cancer, you may want to seek a second opinion.

Page last updated: January 25, 2021

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