JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Extended sleeve lobectomy for lung cancer: the avoidance of pneumonectomy.

OBJECTIVE: We have tried atypical bronchoplasties in patients with noncompromised lung function with centrally located cancers to avoid pneumonectomy. We evaluated the efficacy of extended sleeve lobectomy in such patients.

METHODS: Among 157 patients undergoing bronchoplasty for primary non-small cell lung carcinoma, 15 patients underwent extended sleeve lobectomy.

RESULTS: According to the mode of reconstruction, the 15 patients were classified into 3 groups: (A) anastomosis between the right main and lower bronchi with resection of the upper and middle lobes (n = 6), (B) anastomosis between the left main and basal segmental bronchi with resection of the upper lobe and superior segment of the lower lobe (n = 4), and (C) anastomosis between the left main and upper division bronchi with resection of the lingular segment and lower lobe (n = 5). The tumors were completely resected in all patients. Pulmonary angioplasty was carried out in 8 patients. Bronchial reconstruction was successful in all patients. Pulmonary vein thrombosis resulting from overstretching of the inferior pulmonary vein occurred in 1 patient of group A and was relieved by completion pneumonectomy. There was neither operative mortality nor local recurrence. Although all patients with stage IIB disease and half of patients with stage IIIA disease were alive without recurrence (12-106 months), half of the patients with stage IIIA disease died of distant metastases within 1 year.

CONCLUSIONS: We suggest that this extended sleeve lobectomy, which is technically demanding, should be considered in patients with centrally located lung cancer, because this lung-saving operation is safer than pneumonectomy and is equally curative.

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