Thoracoscopic maneuvers for chest wall resection and reconstruction

J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2012 Sep;144(3):S52-7. doi: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2012.06.005. Epub 2012 Jun 27.


Objective: The aim of this report is to describe technical maneuvers used to complete minimally invasive resections of the chest wall successfully.

Methods: Case videos of advanced thoracoscopic chest wall resections performed at a comprehensive cancer center were reviewed, as were published reports. These were analyzed for similarities and also categorized to summarize alternative approaches.

Results: Limited chest wall resections en bloc with lobectomy can be accomplished with port placement similar to that used for typical thoracoscopic anatomic resections, particularly when the utility incision is close to the region of excision. Generally, chest wall resection precedes lobectomy. Ribs can be transected with Gigli saws, endoscopic shears, or high-speed drills. Division of bone and overlying soft tissue can be planned precisely using thoracoscopic guidance. Isolated primary chest wall masses may require different port position and selective reconstruction using synthetic materials. Patch anchoring can be accomplished by devices that facilitate laparoscopic port site fascial closure.

Conclusions: Thoracoscopic chest wall resections have been accomplished safely using tools and maneuvers summarized here. Further outcomes research is necessary to identify the benefits of thoracoscopic chest wall resection over an open approach.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Humans
  • Osteotomy
  • Plastic Surgery Procedures / adverse effects
  • Plastic Surgery Procedures / methods*
  • Pneumonectomy / adverse effects
  • Pneumonectomy / methods*
  • Ribs / surgery
  • Thoracic Wall / surgery*
  • Thoracoscopy* / adverse effects
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Video Recording