Pattern of recurrence and survival of c-la NSCLC diagnosed by transpleural methods

Luca Voltolini, C. Rapicetta, I. Luzzi, S. Scolletta, T. Ligabue, A. Campione, C. Ghiribelli, G. Gotti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Aim. The aim of this study was to evaluate if transpleural diagnostic methods as percutaneous fineneedle aspiration biopsy (FNAB) or tumour wedge resection by video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) impact on local recurrence and long term survival of patients affected by non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Methods. Records concerning 179 patients with peripheral c-Ia NSCLC who underwent complete resection from 1994 to 2000 have been reviewed. Patients were randomized into two groups according to the diagnostic method employed, as follows: in group I (N.=63) diagnosis was obtained by bronchoscopy; in group II (N.=116) diagnosis was obtained by FNAB (N.=59) or tumour wedge resection by VATS (N.=57) after a negative bronchoscopy. Survival curves were compared using log-rank test. Distribution of frequencies was analyzed with Chi-square and Fisher's exact test. Results. The two groups of patients did not significantly differ in terms of age, gender, forced expiratory volume in 1 second, comorbidities, histological type and tumour size; pathologic stage IIb was more frequent in group I. At a median follow-up of 48 months, (range 2-108 months), local recurrence was found in 9.5% (N.=6) of the patients in group I and in 12.5% (N.=15) of patients in group II (P=NS); distant metastasis were found in 28.6% (N.=18) of patients in group I and in 13.8% (N.=16) in group II (P=0.03). Patients in group II had a statistically better five-year survival rate than patients in group I (70% and 55% respectively P=0.016). Conclusion. FNAB and tumour wedge resection by VATS represent valuable diagnostic methods for lung cancers, since they do not seem to increase the risk of local recurrence. On the other hand, tumours diagnosed by bronchoscopy have a worse prognosis, that may be related to their higher metastatic potential rather than to diagnostic procedure itself.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)697-702
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2008


  • Biopsy, fine-needle
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Carcinoma, non-small-cell lung, surgery
  • Thoracic surgery, video-assisted

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery

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