News Karnataka
Saturday, October 01 2022

Video-assisted thoracic surgery successful at Indiana Hospital

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Mangaluru: In a first for the city, the oncology specialist team of Indiana Hospital and Heart Institute, Mangaluru, successfully performed a single keyhole surgery on a lung cancer patient recently. Surgery is still the fundamental mode of treatment for solid organ cancer. Most people with solid organ cancer will have to undergo surgery in order to remove the cancerous tissue from the adjoining areas, such as lymph nodes. Along with other aspects of treatment, surgical techniques have changed enormously due to a better understanding of cancer.

The patient who underwent surgery is a resident of Mangalore. He was suffering from carcinoma larynx (cancer affecting the voice box), for which he underwent curative chemoradiotherapy and was completely cured. On a follow-up scan (after 8 months), the patient was found to have a lesion in the left lung. Biopsy proved it to be a cancer arising from lung tissue. Hence, surgery was planned for him. For his age opening up the thorax was a risky procedure, as the classic approach to doing it (open thoracic surgery) entails a big incision of 20 cm. Furthermore, opening the chest with manual retractors is a very aggressive and painful operation. The patient has to stay in the hospital for 10–15 days due to the long recovery period, and the patient is also left with a large scar.

The patient was discharged within five days and is now making a satisfactory recovery.

VATS—A novel procedure

 To overcome this issue, the patient was offered the solution of undergoing a single keyhole surgery, i.e., Uniportal video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS). Single-keyhole surgery, though technically challenging, does not require prolonged post-surgery care. It is less costly, requires less medication, and the patient can return to normal life in less than a week. Lung cancer is a major public health concern in the country as over 70,000 people fall victim to it every year. This is now the leading cause of cancer deaths among men and women, according to Globocan by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The most common cause of lung cancer is smoking.

Says Dr. Yusuf Kumble, Managing Director, Indiana Hospital, “This procedure is being done for the first time in Mangalore. Like many firsts to its credit, Indiana has always been at the forefront in offering cutting-edge technology for diagnostics and surgeries/procedures.”

Dr. Ajay Kumar, Consulting Oncologist at Indiana, who performed this surgery, adds, “For this new technique, we use an incision of 4 to 5 cm on the chest wall and work with an endoscopic camera to move instruments from outside while watching on the screen.”

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