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Accurate staging of lung cancer is crucial to ensure the validity of lung cancer clinical research efforts and constitutes the cornerstone of the management of affected patients. The last decade has witnessed unprecedented technological advances allowing for more accurate and less invasive staging. In general, these techniques should be viewed as complementary rather than competitive, and indications, contraindications, and limitations of all staging techniques should be fully understood by providers involved with lung cancer patients. Noninvasive imaging techniques include chest computed tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET). Invasive techniques can be nonsurgical such as needle-based techniques (endobronchial or endoscopic ultrasound) or surgical (mediastinoscopy and variants). The necessary multidisciplinary approach to lung cancer patients dictates that all stakeholders be familiar with the benefits and limitations of these newer techniques.
Published by Elsevier Inc.