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Comparison of surgical approaches for thymic disorders: feasibility of VATS thymectomy and comparison with small incision and median sternotomy
Author(s): 
Pages: 737-740
Year: Issue:  8
Journal: Chinese Journal of Surgery

Keyword:  ThymomaThoracoscopyThymectomySurgical proceduresminimally invasive;
Abstract: Objectives To evaluate the feasibility and safety of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS),and to compare surgical results of VATS with standard median sternotomy (MS) and other minimal invasive approaches through various small incisions (SI).Methods Totally 111 patients underwent surgery for thymic disorders (maximun diameter ≤ 5 cm,clinical stage Ⅰ-Ⅱ for thymic tumors) during March 2010 to June 2012 was retrospectively reviewed.There were 46 male and 65 female patients with a mean age of (51 ± 15) years.Resection via VATS was carried out in 47 patients,via SI in 26 patients,and via MS in 38 patients.Demographic characteristics,operation time,number and cause of conversion,blood loss during operation,duration and amount of chest tube drainage,transfusion,morbidity,and length of hospital stay (LHS) were compared between the three groups.Results Of the 111 patients,79 patients had thymic epithelia tumors (stage Ⅰ 32 patients,stage Ⅱ 39 patients,stage Ⅲ 8 patients),31 patients had benign cysts and 1 patient had tuberculosis.In the VATS group,there were 3 conversions among 38 patients through right-side approach,and 4 conversions among 9 patients through left-side approach.The causes for conversion included dense pleura adhesion,invasion of tumor into adjacent structures (pericardium,lung,or great vessels),and injury of the left inominate vein.There was no significant difference in operative time,blood loss or transfusion during operation,duration or amount of postoperative chest tube drainage among the 3 groups (P > 0.05).Average LHS was significantly shorter in the VATS group (5.7 ± 1.7) days than in theSIgroup (7.5±2.2) days and the MS group (8.2±1.9) days (F=3.759,P =0.002).Total thymectomy was performed in 74 patients,25 patients (53.2%,25/47) in VATS group,11 patients (42.3%,11/26) in SI group,and 38 patients (100%,38/38) in MS group.The reset of the patients received tumor resection and partial thymectomy.Among all the subgroups,LHS was the shortest in VATS total thymectomy patients (5.0 ± 1.4) days (F = 5.844,P = 0.001).There was no perioperative mortality.The only major morbidity was a postoperative bleeding necessitating reintervention in SI group.Conclusions VATS for benign thymic lesions and early-stage thymic tumors is safe and feasible.It is associated with shorter hospital stay compared with other minimal invasive approaches or standard sternotomv.
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