Thoracoscopic anatomic segmentectomies for lung cancer: technical aspects
Although the interest for thoracoscopic sublobar resections (TSLR) is rising, its use for treating non-small cell lung carcinoma (NSCLC) is still controversial because publications dealing with survival and recurrence rate provide contradictory results. If applied to the resection of lung cancer, thoracoscopic segmentectomies must be performed according to oncological criteria. The aim of this technical paper is to give some technical details on thoracoscopic segmentectomies for the treatment of malignancies. Our experience is based on 235 thoracoscopic anatomical segmentectomies performed in 232 patients for a malignant lesion between January 2007 and July 2016. Indication for segmentectomy was a proven or suspected NSCLC in 184 and suspected metastasis in 51 patients. Intraoperative and postoperative data were recorded in a prospective manner. There were eight conversions into a posterolateral thoracotomy (3.4%) and seven unplanned additional pulmonary resections for an oncological reason (3%). We discuss some technical refinements that could minimize these adverse events and make thoracoscopic segmentectomy a safe and reliable procedure.