Video-assisted thoracic surgery for pulmonary aspergilloma: a safe and effective procedure

Ann Thorac Surg. 2014 Jan;97(1):218-23. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2013.08.010. Epub 2013 Oct 3.


Background: A variety of complications occur in patients with pulmonary aspergilloma. The safety and feasibility of a thoracoscopic approach to therapeutic lung resection for pulmonary aspergilloma have not been well evaluated.

Methods: The medical records of patients who underwent video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) or a thoracotomy for therapeutic resection of pulmonary aspergilloma between January 2005 and December 2012 were retrospectively reviewed for age, sex, indications for surgery, approach and procedures, postoperative pain, operative time, blood loss, hospital stay, cost, and complications.

Results: A total of 310 patients underwent thoracotomy, 76 patients underwent attempted VATS lobectomy. Seventy-six patients from 310 patients for thoracotomy were selected and compared with the VATS group. Nine cases (11.8%) in the VATS group were converted to a thoracotomy for the following reasons: bleeding (n =2); dense fibrous adhesions (n =3); fused interlobar fissure (n =2); and hilar lymphadenopathy (n = 2). Lesions treated with pneumonectomy failed to be done using VATS. There was no difference in the blood loss and median operative time between the 2 groups, but the patients with VATS had shorter length of stay in the hospital (p = 0.035) and fewer complications (p = 0.032) than those with thoracotomy.

Conclusions: Video-assisted thoracic surgery is an alternative to open procedures in the management of pulmonary aspergilloma. Simple aspergilloma and complex aspergilloma without infiltration of the hilum are good candidates for VATS resection. Aspergilloma lesions that require a pneumonectomy are still a major challenge for VATS.

Keywords: 11.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • China
  • Cohort Studies
  • Databases, Factual
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Length of Stay
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Safety
  • Pneumonectomy / methods
  • Postoperative Complications / epidemiology
  • Postoperative Complications / physiopathology
  • Pulmonary Aspergillosis / diagnosis*
  • Pulmonary Aspergillosis / surgery*
  • Radiography, Thoracic
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Assessment
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Thoracic Surgery, Video-Assisted / adverse effects
  • Thoracic Surgery, Video-Assisted / methods*
  • Thoracotomy / adverse effects
  • Thoracotomy / methods*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome