In the domain of respiratory surgery minimally invasive approaches are currently being used and video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) is one of these methods. However VATS has some problems in its use for malignant lung diseases for example, with VATS adequate lymph node dissection and continuation of lobectomy in cases with severe adhesion are both difficult. In consideration of these points, limited thoracotomy has been practiced for treatment of lung cancer in our hospital. This study made comparisons between this new method (group A) and the conventional standard thoracotomy (group B). For the limited thoracotomy group (A) the skin incision and amount of bleeding were smaller than for the standard thoracotomy group (B) and the operation time was shorten. All limited thoracotomy group patients could lift up and move the hand of the affected side without pain immediately after the operation. The limited thoracotomy is an excellent approach as a curative operation for lung cancer, for preservation of post-operative pulmonary function, for movement capacity of the hand of the affected side and from the cosmetic viewpoint.