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PURPOSE: This study compares the outcome between thoracoscopic and thoracotomy resection of congenital lung lesions. METHODS: From November 2005 to August 2007, 14 consecutive cases of video-assisted thoracoscopic (VATS) lung resections have been performed in our institution. A retrospective review comparing these cases to the previous open thoracotomies for lung resection was performed. Intraoperative and early postoperative results were compared. RESULTS: The mean age for VATS resection was 10 months compared with 7 months for thoracotomy. There were no major intraoperative complications. One case was converted from thoracoscopy to thoracotomy, and there was one anesthetic failed attempt of VATS resection, which was then performed open. Seven VATS resections and 6 thoracotomies were for congenital cystic adenomatous malformations. Intraoperative chest drains were used for all VATS resections but only 10 of the 14 thoracotomies, one of which developed a tension pneumothorax within hours of discharge. Perioperative outcomes including time to removal of chest drain, length of postoperative intravenous opioid requirement, and hospital stay were similar for both groups. Three had postoperative complications. Operative time was significantly lower in the thoracotomy group (124 minutes compared with 170 minutes, P < .05). The subgroup of congenital lobar emphysema had a particularly prolonged VATS resection time of 220 vs 155 minutes (P < .05). The thoracotomy group was more likely to receive adjuvant regional anesthesia (12 of 14 compared with 5 of 14). CONCLUSIONS: Thoracoscopic resection of lung lesions results in longer operative time but is a safe and feasible alternative to open thoracotomy. Congenital lobar emphysema is a subgroup more challenging thoracoscopically, and it is recommended that these should be preselected for open surgery.

Original publication




Journal article


J Pediatr Surg

Publication Date





333 - 336


Female, Humans, Infant, Lung Diseases, Male, Pneumonectomy, Retrospective Studies, Thoracic Surgery, Video-Assisted, Thoracotomy