Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Minimally invasive surgery may increase options for octogenarians with some lung cancers

10.11.2005


Like their younger counterparts, some elderly patients who have early stage non-small cell lung cancer can benefit from a minimally invasive surgical procedure to remove part or all of a lung, according to a study conducted by thoracic surgeons at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and described in the current issue of The American Surgeon, the journal of the Southeastern Surgical Congress and the Southern California Chapter of the American College of Surgeons.



When non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) are detected at an early, localized stage, surgical removal of the affected area often can prevent metastasis to other tissues and organs. But while some patients, including the elderly, might not be good candidates for the physical demands of open chest surgery, this study of 159 patients between ages 80 and 94 suggests that video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery should be considered a viable option.

"Some patients and their doctors wonder why a person that age should bother to go through any major pulmonary surgery. The reason is that whether the patient is 80 or 95, if they are in reasonably good physical condition without any other major medical problems that are imminently life threatening, the odds are that the cancer is going to progress and the patient will live long enough to go through several unpleasant months with widespread cancer," said Robert McKenna Jr., M.D., thoracic surgeon, surgical director of the Center for Chest Diseases and chief of Thoracic Surgery and Trauma at Cedars-Sinai.


"Our study shows that we can do a standard, complete lung cancer surgery in people over 80 with very low risk and good success so that older patients with lung cancer do not have to suffer the consequences of widespread cancer," said McKenna, senior author of the journal article.

According to previous studies, the average 80-year-old can expect to live another 8.6 years, but the average life expectancy of a patient with untreated or palliated early-stage NSCLC is only 1.5 years.

"If you knew that you could get several additional years to live by having a procedure with low risk and good success in preventing widespread cancer, you might want the option of putting up with the short-term inconvenience of having that operation," McKenna said.

In the study, there were no surgery-related deaths and relatively few complications. "Compared to the percentage of people who experience any type of complication after a major pulmonary resection, our numbers were low, and especially low for patients in this age range," said McKenna.

Open surgery – accomplished through an eight- to 10-inch incision – continues to be used in about 95 percent of lobectomies nationally. McKenna and his colleagues at Cedars-Sinai, however, use the minimally invasive approach in 89 percent of their cases. VATS requires only several small incisions through which instruments and a thoracoscope are inserted. A camera lens at the tip of the scope feeds high-resolution images to a video monitor, giving the surgeon a detailed, magnified view.

"We have been doing minimally invasive lung cancer surgery for a long time and have the largest experience in the world," said McKenna, a pioneer in the development and use of the technology who has performed VATS procedures since 1989. "We follow our patients carefully and have shown that this is the standard cancer operation with the same survival rates as with invasive surgery, but it has tremendous advantages for patients. The stay in the hospital is less and the complication rate is less. It is not pain-free, but patients are able to recover more quickly and get back to their regular activities much more quickly with this operation."

The term non-small cell lung cancer includes several types of lung cancer that when detected at an early and localized stage may be cured with surgical resection. NSCLC accounts for about 75 percent of all lung cancers.

Sandy Van | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.csmc.edu/
http://www.cedars-sinai.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Why might reading make myopic?
18.07.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Tübingen

nachricht Unique brain 'fingerprint' can predict drug effectiveness
11.07.2018 | McGill University

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: First evidence on the source of extragalactic particles

For the first time ever, scientists have determined the cosmic origin of highest-energy neutrinos. A research group led by IceCube scientist Elisa Resconi, spokesperson of the Collaborative Research Center SFB1258 at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), provides an important piece of evidence that the particles detected by the IceCube neutrino telescope at the South Pole originate from a galaxy four billion light-years away from Earth.

To rule out other origins with certainty, the team led by neutrino physicist Elisa Resconi from the Technical University of Munich and multi-wavelength...

Im Focus: Magnetic vortices: Two independent magnetic skyrmion phases discovered in a single material

For the first time a team of researchers have discovered two different phases of magnetic skyrmions in a single material. Physicists of the Technical Universities of Munich and Dresden and the University of Cologne can now better study and understand the properties of these magnetic structures, which are important for both basic research and applications.

Whirlpools are an everyday experience in a bath tub: When the water is drained a circular vortex is formed. Typically, such whirls are rather stable. Similar...

Im Focus: Breaking the bond: To take part or not?

Physicists working with Roland Wester at the University of Innsbruck have investigated if and how chemical reactions can be influenced by targeted vibrational excitation of the reactants. They were able to demonstrate that excitation with a laser beam does not affect the efficiency of a chemical exchange reaction and that the excited molecular group acts only as a spectator in the reaction.

A frequently used reaction in organic chemistry is nucleophilic substitution. It plays, for example, an important role in in the synthesis of new chemical...

Im Focus: New 2D Spectroscopy Methods

Optical spectroscopy allows investigating the energy structure and dynamic properties of complex quantum systems. Researchers from the University of Würzburg present two new approaches of coherent two-dimensional spectroscopy.

"Put an excitation into the system and observe how it evolves." According to physicist Professor Tobias Brixner, this is the credo of optical spectroscopy....

Im Focus: Chemical reactions in the light of ultrashort X-ray pulses from free-electron lasers

Ultra-short, high-intensity X-ray flashes open the door to the foundations of chemical reactions. Free-electron lasers generate these kinds of pulses, but there is a catch: the pulses vary in duration and energy. An international research team has now presented a solution: Using a ring of 16 detectors and a circularly polarized laser beam, they can determine both factors with attosecond accuracy.

Free-electron lasers (FELs) generate extremely short and intense X-ray flashes. Researchers can use these flashes to resolve structures with diameters on the...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Leading experts in Diabetes, Metabolism and Biomedical Engineering discuss Precision Medicine

13.07.2018 | Event News

Conference on Laser Polishing – LaP: Fine Tuning for Surfaces

12.07.2018 | Event News

11th European Wood-based Panel Symposium 2018: Meeting point for the wood-based materials industry

03.07.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Machine-learning predicted a superhard and high-energy-density tungsten nitride

18.07.2018 | Materials Sciences

NYSCF researchers develop novel bioengineering technique for personalized bone grafts

18.07.2018 | Life Sciences

Why might reading make myopic?

18.07.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>