Video-assisted Thoracic Surgery: Air leaks remain significant factor

Published in the most recent edition of the European Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery 39 (2011)173-179 is an outcome analysis following 165 patients treated for major pulmonary resection using VATS technique. The study, performed in Southampton General Hospital’s Cardiovascular and Thoracic Unit concludes that these cases can be performed safely and should be considered as a first choice for certain (T1-2, NO-1 and MO) lesions despite resistance from hospital administration. Interestingly the last line of the paper concludes that air leaks remain the most important cause of prolonged hospital stay.
TissuePatchThoracic from Tissuemed is a synthetic self-adhesive film developed for use in open and VATS surgery. The company believes that VATS cases performed as described in this paper, would benefit from use of this sealing technique. Clinical experience gained to date suggests that drain insertion times and patient stay in hospital can be shortened, making the use of this adhesive film over resection staple lines a viable option from the perspective of surgical outcome, patient benefit and economic grounds.