VATS Lobectomy

What is a lobectomy?

A lobectomy is the surgical removal of a large section of lung. Lobectomy is the most common surgery performed to treat lung cancer. During thoracic surgery, an incision is made on the side of the chest between the ribs. The ribs are then spread apart so the surgeon can see into the chest cavity and remove the tumor or affected tissue. This minimally invasive procedure may be aided by the da Vinci robot.

 

What happens during the VATS (Video Assisted Thoracic Surgery) lobectomy procedure?

Video-assisted lobectomy is less invasive than traditional thoracotomy. During VATS lobectomy, three 1-3 inch incisions and one 3-4 inch incision are made in the chest to provide access to the chest cavity without spreading of the ribs.

During a video-assisted lobectomy, a thorascope (small video camera) and surgical instruments are inserted into the incisions. The thoracic surgeon is guided by the images of the operative area transmitted from the thorascope while performing the lobectomy. The images are projected onto a computer monitor that is positioned next to the patient.

 

What are the benefits to the VATS lobectomy procedure?

Patients who have video-assisted lobectomy generally experience less pain and have a quicker recovery than those who have traditional thoracotomy surgery. Other possible benefits include reduced risk of infection and less bleeding. Most patients are able to be discharged the day of their surgery or within the next two days.

 

Who is eligible for the VATS lobectomy procedure?

The best candidates for video-assisted lobectomy include patients with stage I non-small cell lung cancer (in the first or second stage of cancer that has not spread beyond the lungs) or patients who have a single enlarging pulmonary nodule.

 

What happens after the procedure?

Patients can expect to stay in the hospital for approximately 1 to 3 days after surgery.

Wellness Resources

    • Cancer Health Library

      Cancer Health Library

      With information on everything from nutrition to genetics, a wealth of information awaits patients, survivors and their families here.

      Learn More
    • Take a Vacation from Cancer

      Take a Vacation from Cancer

      From time to time, you may benefit from taking a respite from your cancer diagnosis, even if you can't leave your illness completely behind.

      Learn More
    • Nutrition and Cancer Quiz

      Nutrition and Cancer Quiz

      What effect does diet have on your risk for cancer? Find out by taking this quiz, based in part on information from the American Cancer Society.

      Learn More

Related Services

    • CyberKnife

      CyberKnife Center

      The precision of the CyberKnife treatments reduce patients' radiation therapy sessions from as many as 40 to 5 or less.

      Learn More
    • Diagnostic Imaging

      Diagnostic Imaging

      Our imaging procedures use advanced imaging technology subject to stringent regulatory standards.

      Learn More
    • Surgery

      Surgery

      Meridian Health’s surgical teams of anesthesiologists, registered nurses and board certified, fellowship-trained surgeons work in state-of-the-art operating rooms.

      Learn More