Paraneoplastic syndromes in small cell lung cancer.
Paraneoplastic syndromes can commonly occur due to lung cancer, especially small cell lung cancer. Frequently paraneoplastic syndromes can precede the diagnosis of the neoplasm or present with limited stage disease. However, these syndromes can also occur at the time of recurrence or metastasis of disease. This review focuses on the epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical features, and current management of the most common paraneoplastic syndromes encountered in patients with small cell lung cancer. Manifestations of paraneoplastic syndromes in small cell lung cancer include endocrine syndromes with secretion of excess hormones, and neurologic syndromes due to the production of antibodies causing an autoimmune condition. Recent advances have allowed for greater understanding of these syndromes and for the development of improved diagnostic as well as therapeutic tools. Awareness of paraneoplastic syndromes in small cell lung cancer can lead to an earlier diagnosis and recognition of both the condition and in some cases the disease potentially improving the overall survival and prognosis for patients. Further research examining effective methods to improve recovery from neurologic deficits in patients with a paraneoplastic neurologic illness is warranted.
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