Which paraneoplastic syndromes may occur in non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC)?

Updated: Jul 15, 2021
  • Author: Winston W Tan, MD, FACP; Chief Editor: Nagla Abdel Karim, MD, PhD  more...
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Paraneoplastic syndromes occur in 10-20% of patients. Most paraneoplastic syndromes are caused by small cell lung cancer (SCLC). However many paraneoplastic syndromes also occur in non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients. Some examples include:

  • Hypercalcemia due to parathyroid-like hormone production occurs most commonly in patients with SCCs

  • Clubbing and hypertrophic pulmonary osteoarthropathy and Trousseau syndrome of hypercoagulability are caused more frequently by adenocarcinomas

  • The syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone production (SIADH) is more common in SCLC but can also occur in NSCLC.

  • Cushing syndrome from ectopic adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) production is more likely to occur in SCLC or bronchial carcinoid [40]

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