Mediastinoscopy, thoracoscopy and left anterior mediastinotomy in the diagnosis of N2 non small cell lung cancer

P. Carbognani, M. Rusca, L. Spaggiari, L. Cattelani, A. Bobbio, A. Romani, P. Solli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The preoperative diagnosis of the involvement of the N2 lymph nodes is very important in patients with NSCLC for the most appropriate treatment. The classical diagnostic techniques for mediastinal exploration, mediastinoscopy and left anterior mediastinotomy, have been recently integrated by vedeothoracoscopy. From January 1993 to April 1994 186 patients with NSCLC suitable for surgery, were observed in our Department. 18 patients (9%) had CT evidence of N2 disease. In 10 cases the sites of the nodal enlargement were the right paratracheal station (#2 according to Naruke) and the right tracheobronchial station (#4), in 4 the subcarinal station (#7), in 2 the subaortic (#5) and in the remaining 2 cases the paraaortic station (#6). 14 mediastinoscopies were performed to investigate the stations 2,4 and 7,2 videothoracoscopies for station 5 and 2 left anterior mediastinotomies for station 6. The histological diagnosis was obtained in all cases without intraoperative or postoperative complications. Because the sequence chemotherapy-surgery seems to obtain the best results in the treatment of N2 disease the preoperative diagnosis of nodal involvement is of outstanding importance. Until recently mediastinoscopy and anterior left mediastinotomy were considered the standard techniques to explore mediastinum, now also videothoracoscopy has been introduced. In our experience, the integration of all the above techniques allowed a complete study of each suspect N2 site. Particularly the videothoracoscopy is very useful to safely biopsy under direct vision the aortic window lymph nodes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-178
Number of pages2
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number6 SUPPL. 1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1996


  • Lymph node metastasis
  • Mediastinoscopy
  • Non small cell lung cancer
  • Thoracoscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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