Thoracoscopic surgery as a routine procedure for spontaneous pneumothorax: Results from 82 patients

H. P. Liu*, Jing Lin Pyng Jing Lin, M. J. Hsieh, J. P. Chang, C. H. Chang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

73 Scopus citations


A total of 82 consecutive patients with recurrent or persistent spontaneous pneumothorax were considered for thoracoscopic blebectomy or bullectomy and pleurodesis. The median age was 47 years, and 70% were men. All the patients were successfully treated using a video-assisted thoracoscopic technique. There were no deaths attributable to the procedure. Complications occurred in 6 patients (7.3%). Three patients (4%) with diffuse bullous lung disease had prolonged intubation (9, 11, and 12 days, respectively). Persistent air leaks lasting from 10 to 14 days occurred in 2 patients (3%). One patient had an endoloop slip from the lung parenchyma after a forceful sneeze 2 days after the operation. Air leak subsided after the second operation using a conventional suturing technique. Blebs or bullae were present in 69 patients (83%). There were ablated by endoscopic stapling (37 patients) and through thoracoscopic ligation using an endoloop technique (32 patients). In this group of patients, the median postoperative hospital stay was 5 days. Thirteen patients with air leaks and diffuse bullous lung disease received only tale insufflation thoracoscopically. All of them showed good lung expansion after the operation. There are no recurrences, with a mean follow-up of 22 months. These results suggest that thoracoscopic ablation of blebs or bullae and pleurodesis may be applicable to patients with spontaneous pneumothorax who require surgical intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-562
Number of pages4
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1995
Externally publishedYes


  • spontaneous pneumothorax
  • thoracoscopic surgery


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