Article Abstract

Uniportal video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery for the treatment of thoracic emergencies

Authors: Marc Swierzy, Svea Faber, Dania Nachira, Alida Günsberg, Jens C. Rückert, Mahmoud Ismail


Background: While video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) is well accepted in the management of thoracic emergencies, uniportal VATS has not yet been studied for this indication. This paper reports the results of the treatment of chest trauma patients by uniportal VATS in a single center with extensive experience in uniportal VATS.
Methods: In this prospective study all patients who underwent uniportal VATS for thoracic surgical emergency cases, between 06/2012 and 09/2017, were included and the data were reviewed retrospectively.
Results: Six hundred forty-two uniportal VATS procedures were performed. Among those, 12 emergency cases could be identified. The indication was a hemothorax with active bleeding in all cases and the uniportal VATS approach was carried out after carefully evaluating all clinical factors and risks related to such a special setting. The location, extent and severity of the injuries were diagnosed and treated intraoperatively. The conversion rate was zero. The mean surgical time was 106.25 minutes [63–240], the chest tube was removed after 6.75 days in average (range, 1–25). All patients were transferred to the post anesthesia care unit (PACU) or intensive care unit (ICU) for at least one night (range, 1–25). The mean postoperative hospital stay was 10.67 days [4–26].
Conclusions: In expert hands, uniportal VATS approach seems to be a safe and feasible procedure for both, the diagnostics and management of emergency cases, such as active thoracic bleeding in cardiopulmonary stable patients.