In non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), pleural effusion is a frequently observed complication, and often provides a treatment difficulties. The aim of this study is to evaluate prognostic significance of pleural effusion in patients with NSCLC.
Materials and methods: Seven hundred and eight untreated patients with NSCLC who were consecutively admitted to our department over a 20 year period up to December 1996, were analyzed using uni- and multivariate analyses.
Results: Univariate analysis showed pleural effusion to be a significant prognostic factor for NSCLC, in addition to gender, stage, performance status(PS). Multivariate analysis proved pleural effusion to be one of the significant prognostic factors, especially in patients with poor PS.
Conclusion: Adequate palliative care to provide prolonged quality survival remains the primary goal of therapy for patients with poor performance status and pleural effusion until better treatments are developed.