Video-assisted wedge resection and local radiotherapy for peripheral lung cancer in high-risk patients: the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB) 9335, a phase II, multi-institutional cooperative group study

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2005 Apr;129(4):813-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2004.05.011.


Objectives: This study examined the feasibility of thoracoscopic wedge resection and radiotherapy for clinical T1 lesions in patients with compromised cardiopulmonary status.

Methods: In this phase II, prospective, multicenter, cooperative group trial, high-risk patients had one or more of the following risk factors: forced expiratory volume in 1 second less than 40%, carbon monoxide diffusing capacity in lung less than 50%, and maximum oxygen consumption less than 45 mm Hg. Patients underwent video-assisted wedge resection followed by local (56 Gy) radiotherapy. The primary end point was the proportion of patients whose disease could be completely resected and who received radiotherapy without treatment complications.

Results: Between September 1995 and September 1999, a total of 65 patients were accrued, of which 58 were eligible (52% male, median age 69 years). Pathologic staging resulted in upgrading to T2 or greater in 16 of 58 cases (28%) and in reassessment as benign in 10 of 58 cases (17%). Conversion to thoracotomy was required in 10 cases (17%), including 1 of 10 benign T1-size lesion (10%), 4 of 35 non-small cell lung cancer T1 lesions (13%), and 5 of 14 non-small cell lung cancer T2 lesions (31%). Resection margins were positive in 5 patients: 6% of T1 and 23% of T2. Surgery was aborted in 2 cases (3.5%), and operative mortality was 4%. Overall operative failure rates of video-assisted wedge resection were 20% for benign T1-size lesions, 22% for T1 non-small cell lung cancer, 21% for all T1 lesions, 50% for T2 non-small cell lung cancer, and 29% for all lesions in this study (clinical T1). Prolonged air leaks occurred in 10%, pneumonia in 6%, and respiratory failure in 4%. Thirty-one patients were eligible for radiotherapy; 3 of them refused, and 1 died before treatment. Among the 28 patients who received radiotherapy, severe dyspnea was noted in 3 patients (11%) and moderate pneumonitis in 4 (14%).

Conclusions: Clinical staging in high-risk patients is often inaccurate (45% difference from pathologic staging). Intention to treat clinically staged T1 disease by video-assisted wedge resection is associated with a high failure rate. Pathologically staged T1 lesions can be successfully resected in 75% of cases; however, narrow resection margins remain a concern.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Clinical Trial, Phase II
  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / radiotherapy
  • Carcinoma, Non-Small-Cell Lung / surgery
  • Dyspnea / etiology
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Forced Expiratory Volume / physiology
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / physiopathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / radiotherapy
  • Lung Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Pneumonectomy / methods*
  • Pneumonia / etiology
  • Pneumothorax / etiology
  • Prospective Studies
  • Pulmonary Diffusing Capacity / physiology
  • Radiotherapy, Adjuvant*
  • Respiratory Insufficiency / etiology
  • Risk Factors
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Video-Assisted Surgery*