What Is Pemetrexed Used For?
Pemetrexed is approved as a chemotherapy drug that can help treat certain types of lung cancer, such as non-squamous, non-small-cell lung cancer. People who are not good candidates for cancer surgery may also use pemetrexed in combination with cisplatin (another anticancer medicine). This medication is not approved for use in children.
An Introduction to Pemetrexed UsesPemetrexed (Alimta®) is a prescription chemotherapy medication used to treat malignant pleural mesothelioma and non-squamous, non-small-cell lung cancer.
Using Pemetrexed for Non-Squamous, Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer
There are two general types of lung cancer: small-cell lung cancer and non-small-cell lung cancer. Non-small-cell lung cancer is much more common than small-cell lung cancer. Also, non-small-cell lung cancer spreads more slowly than small-cell lung cancer.
Non-small-cell lung cancers can be further divided into those that begin in squamous cells (squamous cell carcinomas) and those that begin elsewhere (non-squamous carcinomas).
Surgery is the most common way to treat non-small-cell lung cancer. Cryosurgery, a treatment that freezes and destroys cancer tissue, may be used to control symptoms in the later stages of this disease. Radiation therapy and chemotherapy may also be used to slow the progress of non-small-cell lung cancer and to manage symptoms.
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Pemetrexed may be used with another anticancer drug called cisplatin, depending on whether you have had previous treatment for your lung cancer and whether this is your initial treatment with pemetrexed. Your healthcare provider will recommend the specific chemotherapy regimen that is best for you and your type of cancer.