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01.12.2018 | Research article | Ausgabe 1/2018 Open Access

Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery 1/2018

Salvage thoracic surgery in patients with lung cancer: potential indications and benefits

Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery > Ausgabe 1/2018
Erkan Kaba, Mehmet Oguzhan Ozyurtkan, Kemal Ayalp, Tugba Cosgun, Mazen Rasmi Alomari, Alper Toker



To investigate the feasibility and efficacy of salvage lung resection and describe the possible indications and contraindications in patients with primary lung cancer.


Thirty patients undergoing anatomical salvage lung resection were classified into three groups: GI, patients with progressive lung tumor despite definitive chemo- and/or radiotherapy; GII, patients who underwent emergency resection; and GIII, patients in whom neoadjuvant or definitive chemo- and/or radiotherapy was contraindicated because of severe comorbidities. The groups were compared based on, peri- and postoperative factors, and survival rates.


The morbidity rate was 70%. Revision surgery was required in 23% of patients. Morbidity was affected by lower hematocrit and hemoglobin levels (P = 0.05). Mean hospital stay was 11 ± 4 days, which was longer in patients in whom complications developed (P = 0.0003). The in-hospital or 30-day mortality rate was 3%. Mean relapse-free survival and overall survivals were 14 ± 12 and 19 ± 13 months.


Patients with progression of the persistent primary tumor after definitive chemo- and/or radiotherapy can undergo salvage lung resection with acceptable mortality and high morbidity rates, if the tumor is considered resectable. Other indications may be considered for salvage lung resection based on each patient’s specific evaluation.
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