Our Clinical Research Fellowships enable clinical registrars to become national leaders in lung cancer care in the UK. The main focus is to train the fellow in health service research methods, audit/clinical improvement methods and clinical aspects of lung cancer with a view to developing into a knowledgeable advocate for people with lung cancer, who are then able to push forward service improvements effectively.
Our current research fellow, Dr Gavin Jones, is analysing factors that influence early survival after chemotherapy and radiotherapy in lung cancer. The research aims to address the following questions:
1. What proportion of people with non-small cell lung cancer have chemotherapy?
2. What impact does this treatment have on their survival?
3. What patient level and hospital level features influence the use chemotherapy in people with advanced non-small cell lung cancer?
4. What geographical and trust level variations exist in the provision of chemotherapy for people with small cell and non-small cell lung cancer?
5. What patient level factors predict complications and early death after the use of chemotherapy for non-small cell and small cell lung cancer?
6. Can we better inform clinicians about the predictive factors that determine better (and worse) survival with the use of chemotherapy?
The main impact of this research will be to understand what patient, hospital and geographical factors influence the use of chemotherapy for people with lung cancer – and in particular to identify patterns of under use of this treatment. In addition it is hoped to establish for the first time a risk model to predict adverse effects of chemotherapy and identify which patients might be at risk of early death from treatment complications, thereby informing and improving clinical decision making. We believe that these findings will change the clinical guidelines for lung cancer and have an important and immediate impact on patterns of care.