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Lung Cancer Treatment

Stereotactic Radiosurgery

A Bloodless, Non-invasive, Outpatient Treatment for Lung Tumors

Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers in Singapore and is the leading cause of cancer death worldwide. There are many treatment options for lung cancer depending on factors such as stage of disease, age, and one's fitness for surgery. Every person's cancer is different so it is important that a careful workup is performed so that treatment can be personalised to each individual.


In this modern era, scientific and technological advances have provided new treatments for lung cancer that are minimally invasive, precise, and with less side effects compared to conventional treatments such as chemotherapy and open surgery. Stereotactic Radiosurgery (also known as bloodless surgery), Targeted Therapy (also known as "magic bullet" chemo pills) and Immunotherapy (to boost our own immunity) are such examples that have provided new hope in the fight against both early and late stage lung cancer.

For early-stage lung cancers, the alternative treatment to surgery is Stereotactic Ablative Radiosurgery also known as (SABR), which is fondly regarded by the oncology community as the lightsaber of radiation therapy.

What is Lung Stereotactic Ablative Radiosurgery & Why should I consider it

Lung Stereotactic Ablative Radiosurgery (SABR) is a non-invasive, highly targeted form of radiation treatment that is recommended in international cancer guidelines as an alternative to surgery in early stage lung cancers for selected patient groups. SABR has been proven in studies to confer excellent survival rates at 85% at three years, comparable to surgery and is an increasingly important option in early stage lung cancer treatment. 

NCCN Guidelines Lung Cancer

* The NCCN guidelines on NSCLC is written by 30 leading cancer centres in the U.S and is regarded as the gold standard internationally

Lung SABR is also commonly used in stage 4 cancers to target tumors that have spread to the lung, and to prevent or relief symptoms. Often, it is combined with immunotherapy to achieve a synergistic effect. Unlike surgery or other invasive procedures, SABR does not cause disruption to the continued use of chemotherapy or targeted therapy in these patients.

SABR works by using technologically advanced machines to deliver extremely focused beams carrying high doses of radiation directly to the tumour to destroy it.  With SABR, an entire treatment course can be completed in three to five outpatient sessions over two weeks, with no surgical or anaesthetic risk.

AARO Lung Radiosurgery

Modern Linear Accelerator with 6 degrees of freedom robotic couch


Lung SABR destroys lung cancer with painless and precise radiation beams

What is Lung SABR?
  • Am I eligible for Lung SABR treatment?
    Stereotactic Ablative Radiosurgery (SABR) is endorsed in international cancer guidelines as an alternative option to surgery in selected patients groups, such as those with early stage (stage 1 & stage 2) lung cancers, or at high operative risk. Patients wishing to find out more should consult a radiosurgeon (not thoracic surgeon) who will assess each case, taking into account patient, tumor and technical factors, to determine if SABR is appropriate. It is important to see the correct specialist with the pre-requisite training and expertise, so that the right assessment can be made, and treatment performed safely. Book your appointment here. For further clarifications, do contact us at +65 8101 3838.
  • What is the difference between Radiotherapy and Radiosurgery?
    Radiosurgery packs all the dose usually given over 5-6 weeks, and gives it over 1-5 days. The Radiosurgeon is a Radiation Oncologist who is trained in both radiotherapy, oncology, and the complex technologies used to deliver Radiosurgery. Since radiation is the ‘knife’ which ‘cuts’ the tumor, it is critical that the Radiosurgeon is well trained with radiation medicine.
  • What is the difference between Proton Beam Therapy and Radiosurgery?
    Radiosurgery and Proton Beam Therapy are both precision radiation therapies. Radiosurgery avoids treating normal tissue by sophisticated beam shaping and modulation, while Proton Beam avoids treating normal tissue by reducing dose deposition during the exit of the beam. They can be used in combination, depending on the location of the target and the diagnosis of the patient.

Wherever you are in your cancer journey, we will help you navigate it.

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Our Lung Radiosurgery Specialist

AARO Dr David Tan Lung Cancer

Dr David Tan Boon Harn

Senior Consultant Radiation Oncologist 

MBBS (Sin), FRCR (Clinical Oncology, UK)
FAMS (Radiation Oncology)

Clinical Interest:
Lung Stereotatic Ablative Radiosurgery (SABR)
Lung Cancers & GI, Gynaecology, Brachytherapy

View Dr David Tan's profile here.

Dr David Tan: Our Lung Oncologist
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