This is life—the journey of a pioneer surgeon on a new approach to thoracic Surgery

Posted On 2015-04-09 16:18:28

A DOCUMENTARY recording how a new approach to thoracic surgery has changed people’s lifes premiered in China at the University of Hong Kong Shenzhen Hospital on Friday 20th of March with the surgeon who created the technique and the Hollywood-nominated director present (Figure 1). “This is Life” depicts how Diego Gonzalez Rivas, the Associate Editor of Journal of Visualized Surgery, who became the first in the world to perform single port thoracoscopic surgery in 2010, changed his patients’ lives in the four years following the creation of the technique (Figure 2). Thoracic surgery is performed mainly to remove part of the lung for lung cancer sufferers.

Figure 2 Dr. Diego Gonzalez Rivas is introducing his experience in uniportal VATS. 

The movie was directed by Daniel Lopez, and it was recorded in different countries such as Emirates, UK, Poland, Spain, Russia or China. In the movie we can see how Dr Gonzalez Rivas travel around the world teaching the uniportal VATS technique. Dani Lopez met Rivas in 2010, a few months after his ex-wife died of lung cancer at 29. Lopez try to show patients that the option of surgery exists and that it could give some of them a second chance at life. During the procedure, one very small (3cm to 4cm) incision is made, instead of more conventional video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) or traditional open surgery. In comparison to VATS, which utilizes multiple incisions, Rivas’ method shows that less really is more. There is less pain, less recovery time and less scarring for patients with no sacrifice in quality. The movie also shows the story of a patient operated by this minimally invasive technique and with no intubation, representing the less invasive approach to operate lung cancer. The cultural aspects of each country are included as a highlighted content of the movie.

Standard three-port VATS techniques use a cross-body approach, as ports are spread in a triangular configuration. Surgeons then work within these angles to position their instruments to perform lung resections. Unfortunately this configuration sacrifices the visibility made available with traditional techniques, which use one very large (10 to 20 cm) incision. Three-port approaches also force surgeons into anatomically uncomfortable positions for the duration of the surgery. Surgeons are forced to contort their bodies and adopt an uncomfortably wide stance to be able to easily manipulate all of the instruments simultaneously. These challenges led Rivas to conceive of and develop single-port surgery for major pulmonary resections. To the surprise of the thoracic surgery community, the single-port approach quells many of the difficulties. By inserting all of the instruments in the same port of the camera, surgeons gain visibility and maneuverability without sacrificing ergonomics.

The movie could be enjoyed at:

Opinions and comments from world experts on the journey:

See more of Dr. Diego Gonzalez Rivas' Uniportal VATS teaching sharing as following:

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Australia
Initial experience in uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) for major lung resections—Australia’s first uniportal VATS teaching program
Rajeev Shukla, Sriram Vijayapuri, Mohammad Rahnavardi, Stephen A. Barnett, Gavin M. Wright

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Germany
Non-intubated uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery-lobectomy in Germany—the first 2 cases
Patrick Zardo, Norman Zinne, Frank Logemann, Clemens Gras, Diego Gonzales Rivas

Teaching Uniportal in Spain
Subxiphoid uniportal video-assisted bilateral surgery: right upper lobectomy and left upper wedge resection S3
Carlos Fernando Giraldo Ospina, Roberto MongilPoce, Ricardo Arrabal Sánchez, Ricardo Medina Sánchez, Noelia Sánchez Martin,Diego Gonzalez Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Brazil
Uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery: Pelotas—RS, Brazil, 2018
Otávio Leite Gastal, Ricardo Lanzetta Haack, Diego Gonzales Rivas, Laura Nunes Rotta, Izabel de Oliveira Karam

Teaching Uniportal in Brazil
Uniportal video assisted thoracic surgery right main sparing lung bronchial resection: live surgery in Sao Paulo
Rodrigo A. S. Sardenberg, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in South Africa
Uniportal lobectomy in Africa: a beginning
Ivan Schewitz

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Coruna
Teaching uniportal VATS in Coruña
Kristin Eckland, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal in Lithuania
Nonintubated uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery course—live surgery
Rasa Karalevičiūtė, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Philippines
Dr. Diego Gonzalez Rivas’ trip to the Philippines in November 2015
Antonio B. Ramos

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Jerusalem 
Management of bleeding from an abnormally located S6 arterial branch in a common origin with S2 branch during live surgery
Firas Abu Akar, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas, Daniel Fink

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Egypt
Right pneumonectomy for carcinoid tumor extending through the intermediate bronchus and the interlobar artery
Hussein Elkhayat, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Costa Rica 
The evolution of uniportal video assisted thoracic surgery in Costa Rica
William Guido Guerrero, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas, Yang Yang, Wentao Li

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Jordan 
Uniportal lobectomy in Jordan—the journey continues
Hamdi Abu Ali, Khaled Al-Asad, Baha Shihadeh, Nada AbdulBaqi, Osama Al-Bdour, Sakher Alkhaderi, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Oslo Norway 
Transition from thoracotomy to uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery in non-small cell lung cancer—the Oslo experience
Henrik Aamodt

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Chile
Single port training in Latin-America—first uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery masterclass in Santiago, Chile
José Miguel Clavero

The adoption of uniportal approach in Chile: the experience of a single surgical team from Valparaíso, Chile
Cristian González Collao

Uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery lobectomy using a novel perfused ex vivo simulation model
Ruben Avila, Pablo Achurra, Rodrigo Tejos, Julian Varas, María Solovera, Patricio Salas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Mexico 
Uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery course in Mexico—first experience
Erick Céspedes-Meneses, José Manuel Echavarri-Arana, Alejandro Tort-Martínez, Enrique Guzmán-de Alba, Joao Carlos das Neves-Pereira, Diego González-Rivas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Colombia  
First non-intubated uniportal video-assisted pulmonary lobectomy in America
Ricardo Buitrago, Adriana Serna, Diego González-Rivas, Rafael Beltrán, Carlos Mario Palacio, Pablo Parades, Julian Beltrán

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Ecuador  
First uniportal video assisted thoracic surgery masterclass in Ecuador
John Barba-Pacheco, Gutenberg Navarro, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas, Fernando Polit, Pamela Wong, Fabrizio Nieto, Manuel Romero, Jaime Carrera, Jonathan Villacis, Martha J. Zambrano, Karina Bravo, Renee Velastegui, Freddy Rodríguez, Manuel Reyes, Silvia Cullacay, Ramiex Cercado, Sara Salvatierra

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Argentina  
Uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery, Argentinian experience
Gustavo Bondulich, Diego Gonzalez Rivas

First International Symposium, Uniportal VATS—International Course Uniportal VATS, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Gustavo J. Bondulich 

Teaching Uniportal in Athens  
The Athens uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery masterclass—an ambitious kickstarter
Constantine Marios Soultanis, Diego Gonzalez Rivas, Konstantinos Konstantinidis, Konstantinos Siafakas

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Rome 
Teaching uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery in Rome
Elisa Meacci, Dania Nachira, Maria Teresa Congedo, Stefano Margaritora

Uniportal VATS lobectomies—masterclass in Bratislava
Miroslav Janik, Peter Juhos

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Singapore
 The inaugural SingHealth uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery masterclass in Singapore
Boon-Hean Ong, Diego Gonzalez-Rivas 

Teaching Uniportal VATS in Dominican Republic 
Start and development of uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) in Dominican Republic: surgeries and training experience
Jonathan Vargas Acevedo, Diego González-Rivas