Bilateral surgery using a unilateral single-port approach: the Chen technique

a sneak peak at a game-changer in thoracic surgery – unilateral single-port surgery for bilateral disease

More news out of Taiwan from the innovative and dynamic Dr. Chih – Hao “Roy” Chen, this time in the form of a soon-to-be published case report in the prestigious Asian journal, the Annals of Thoracic & Cardiovascular Surgery.

Dr. Chen, Thoracic Surgeon
Dr. Chen, Thoracic Surgeon

The article, entitled, “Treatment of bilateral empyema thoracis using unilateral single port approach,” details one of his recent cases and discusses the use of unilateral single port surgery for the treatment of bilateral conditions.  (For the uninitiated – that’s one small incision to treat an infection on both sides of the chest.)

Case report: bilateral empyema

In this case report, a 28 year old male presented with dyspnea, sore throat, malaise, fever and weakness. Patient was admitted with a diagnosis of sepsis and started on antibiotics.

Labs showed an elevated WBC count (19,300), C-reactive protein and D-dimer.  Subsequent imaging confirmed the presence of pulmonary emboli, and with serial imaging showing worsening bilateral pleural effusions. Thoracic surgery was consulted for definitive treatment.

Dr. Chen discusses this technique, as well as considerations for using this novel approach.

First look at innovative approach

Other that his recent discussions here at Cirugia de Torax, this is the first time that surgery utilizing this technique has been discussed in a medical forum.  This represents a ground-breaking advance in thoracoscopic surgery, single port surgery and thoracic surgery as a whole.

Update:  Article published June 18, 2013 in the Annals of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.  A pdf of the full article is available.

Chih-Hao Chen), Wei-Sha Lin, Ho Chang, Shih-Yi Lee, Tzu-Ti Hung, Chih-Yin Tai (2013). Treatment of Bilateral Empyema Thoracis Using Unilateral Single-Port Thoracoscopic Approach.



Author: K Eckland

World of Thoracic Surgery is a blog about the work, research, and practices of thoracic surgeons around the world. It includes case studies, [sometimes] dry research, interviews with thoracic surgeons along with patient perspectives, and feedback.

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