What is the role of metastasectomy (wedge resection) in the treatment of secondary lung cancer?

Updated: Feb 16, 2021
  • Author: Daniel S Schwartz, MD, MBA, FACS; Chief Editor: John Geibel, MD, MSc, DSc, AGAF  more...
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The procedure of choice for the treatment of secondary lung tumors is metastasectomy (wedge resection of the malignant nodule) by means of thoracotomy or video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery [32] (VATS). In the case of bilateral metastasis, median sternotomy may be preferable to staged thoracotomy, particularly if VATS is contraindicated. Surgical resection of pulmonary metastasis is always performed with curative intent.

Some authors believe that a thoracotomy is preferable to VATS, solely because, they reason, tactile evaluation is important to the resection of all metastatic disease. [33]  It can be counterargued, however, that the efficiency of multislice computed tomography (CT) has improved the ability to detect even subcentimeter lesions.

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