Predictors of major morbidity and mortality after pneumonectomy utilizing the Society for Thoracic Surgeons General Thoracic Surgery Database

Ann Thorac Surg. 2010 Sep;90(3):927-34; discussion 934-5. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2010.05.041.


Background: Pneumonectomy is associated with a significant incidence of perioperative morbidity and mortality. The purpose of this study is to identify the risk factors responsible for adverse outcomes in patients after pneumonectomy utilizing The Society of Thoracic Surgeons General Thoracic Surgery Database (STS GTDB).

Methods: All patients who had undergone pneumonectomy between January 2002 and December 2007 were identified in the STS GTDB. Among 80 participating centers, 1,267 patients were selected. Logistic regression analysis was performed on preoperative variables for major adverse outcomes.

Results: The rate of major adverse perioperative events was 30.4%, including 71 patients who died (5.6%). Major morbidity was defined as pneumonia, adult respiratory distress syndrome, empyema, sepsis, bronchopleural fistula, pulmonary embolism, ventilatory support beyond 48 hours, reintubation, tracheostomy, atrial or ventricular arrhythmias requiring treatment, myocardial infarct, reoperation for bleeding, and central neurologic event. Patients with major morbidity had a longer mean length of stay compared with patients without major morbidity (13.3 versus 6.1 days, p < 0.001). Independent predictors of major adverse outcomes were age 65 years or older (p < 0.001), male sex (p = 0.026), congestive heart failure (p = 0.04), forced expiratory volume in 1 second less than 60% of predicted (p = 0.01), benign lung disease (p = 0.006), and requiring extrapleural pneumonectomy (p = 0.018). Among patients with lung carcinoma, those receiving neoadjuvant chemoradiotherapy were more at risk for major morbidity than patients without induction therapy (p = 0.049).

Conclusions: The mortality rate after pneumonectomy by thoracic surgeons participating in the STS database compares favorably to that in previously published studies. We identified risk factors for major adverse outcomes in patients undergoing pneumonectomy.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Databases, Factual*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pneumonectomy / adverse effects*
  • Pneumonectomy / mortality*
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Prognosis
  • Risk Factors
  • Societies, Medical
  • Thoracic Surgery