Surgery plays a key role in the management of early stage lung cancer, achieving five-year disease-free survival rates of up to 80%. While associated with excellent cure rates, lung resection remains a major surgical procedure. Lung cancer patients in the early stages of the disease are benefiting from a video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) available at PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center.
The VATS lobectomy is a minimally-invasive surgery option to remove cancerous tumors which involves the thoroscopic removal of an entire lobe. The procedure requires only a few small incisions through the side of the torso versus the traditional method of surgery, which involves opening the front of the chest and spreading the ribs.
When possible, a VATS lobectomy often reduces the hospital stay from a week to ten days to as few as two to four days days, and allows the patient to resume regular activity in about a week in contrast to a traditional recovery time of six weeks.
A lung lobectomy is considered to be among the best treatment options for early stage lung cancer and is especially effective when used in combination with other treatment options, such as chemotherapy or radiation.
There are many ways to treat cancer, and the very best way is with a multi-layered approach to care. Physicians in this community are taking a collaborative approach to fighting cancer that combines traditional therapies with the newest high-tech tools such as VATS and CyberKnife®.
About the doctor...
Riyad Karmy-Jones, MD, FACC, served as associate professor at the University of Washington and chief of Thoracic Surgery at Harborview Medical Center.
He took his fellowship in interventional radiology at the University of Washington. He completed his residency in general surgery at George Washington University Medical Center, followed by trauma/ICU, Washington Hospital Center, and Cardiothoracic Surgery, University of Alberta, 1991-94. His medical degree was awarded by the University of Alberta.
His clinical interests include:
Thoracic oncology (lung, mediastinum, esophagus), benign esophageal disease (including laparoscopic and thorascopic approaches), thoracic trauma, thoracic vascular diseases.
To learn more or for appointment information, visit his practice website.
Published June 2008.