Objectives: To compare the recurrence rate of primary spontaneous pneumothorax (PSP) after uniportal video assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) bullectomy and mechanical pleurodesis in patients managed with a regulating pressure drainage system compared and those managed with a traditional one.
Methods: Retrospective propensity score case-matched analysis of 174 consecutive patients submitted to uniportal VATS bullectomy and mechanical pleural abrasion (2007-13) in two centres. Definition of recurrence: Recurrent PSP requiring new treatment (i.e. aspiration, chest tube reinsertion, reoperation) within 12 months from the operation. All patients were managed with a single 24-Fr chest tube. Group 1 (106 patients): Tube connected to a traditional device (T) maintained on wall suction (-20 cmH2O) for 48 h. Group 2 (68 patients): Tube connected to a regulating pressure device (R) set at -20 cmH2O for 48 h. Chest tube removal criteria: No air leak (no bubbling or air flow <20 ml/min for at least 8 h) and pleural effusion <200 ml/day. Propensity score case-matching analysis was performed using the following variables: Age, gender, height, weight, side of operation, dystrophic score, length of stapled parenchyma.
Results: The two groups of 68 pairs were well matched for baseline and surgical characteristics. Patients of Group 2 (R) showed a significantly lower incidence of recurrence rate compared with matched counterparts (T) (3, 4.4 vs 10, 14%, P = 0.041). There were no differences in persistent air leak incidence, chest tube duration or hospital stay between the groups. Group 2 had a higher 48-h output of pleural effusion compared with Group 1 (P < 0.0001).
Conclusions: By stabilizing the pleural pressure at the preset values, novel regulating pressure devices may enhance pleurodesis, leading to a reduced incidence of PSP recurrences after uniportal VATS bullectomy and pleural abrasion.
Keywords: Bullectomy; Pleurodesis; Primary spontaneous pneumothorax; Single port; Uniportal VATS.
© The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery. All rights reserved.