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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 59

of 'Primary spontaneous pneumothorax in adults'

Primary spontaneous pneumothorax: one-stage treatment by bilateral videothoracoscopy.
Lang-Lazdunski L, de Kerangal X, Pons F, Jancovici R
Ann Thorac Surg. 2000;70(2):412.
BACKGROUND: The goal of the study was to report our 7-year experience with single-stage bilateral videothoracoscopy for bleb excision and pleural abrasion in patients suffering primary spontaneous pneumothorax.
METHODS: From November 1992 through June 1999, 12 men were operated on in our department. Preoperative chest computed tomographic scans were obtained for all patients. Operative indications included simultaneous bilateral pneumothorax (n = 2), contralateral recurrence (n = 1), ipsilateral recurrence with contralateral blebs or bullae, and job restrictions (n = 9).
RESULTS: Mean age at operation was 26+/-6 years. All patients had multiple blebs or bullae located in upper lobes, and 4 patients (33%) had pleural adhesions. All blebs or bullae were resected at operation. The mean number of staple cartridges was 5 per patient (range, 3 to 8). All patients had bilateral pleurabrasion. There were no perioperative complications and no conversion to thoracotomy. The mean operative time was 168+/-17 minutes (range, 140 to 190 minutes). The mean drainage time was 5 days (range, 4 to 26 days) and the mean hospital stay was 7.7+/-1.4 days for 11 of 12 patients. Postoperative complications included prolonged air leak (16.5%), incomplete lung reexpansion (25%), and pleural effusion (8.5%). One patient required reoperation on the right side through transaxillary thoracotomy within 1 month of videothoracoscopy for pleurodesis failure. Follow-up was 100% complete. Mean follow-up is 50+/-34 months (range, 9 to 88 months) and no patient has had recurrence of pneumothorax. All patients except one returned to full occupational activity within 5 weeks of surgery.
CONCLUSIONS: Single-stage bilateral videothoracoscopy for bilateral bleb excision and pleurabrasion is a safe procedure that does not result in major complications and provides excellent long-term results. This approach could be considered in young patients with bilateral primary spontaneous pneumothorax, or in those requiring radical therapy for the prevention of ipsilateral and contralateral recurrences.
Department of Thoracic and General Surgery, Percy Military Hospital, Clamart, France. loic.lang@wanadoo.fr