Protection of right pneumonectomy bronchial sutures with a pedicled thymus flap

Maurizio V. Infante, Marco Alloisio, Luca Balzarini, Umberto Cariboni, Alberto Testori, Matteo A. Incarbone, Paolo Macri, Gianluigi Ravasi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A pedicled flap obtained by mobilizing the right lobe of the thymus was used to protect bronchial sutures in 29 consecutive patients undergoing a right pneumonectomy and in 4 additional patients. Fourteen patients had received preoperative chemotherapy with or without radiotherapy. The flap procedure was, in general, easy to do, required an average time of 20.4 minutes, and did not cause added operative morbidity. Postoperative magnetic resonance imaging, performed in 21 of the 29 patients who had pneumonectomy, showed a viable flap in every instance. One bronchopleural fistula occurred in a pneumonectomy patient after induction chemotherapy plus radiotherapy in a patient in the pneumonectomy group in whom adult respiratory distress syndrome developed postoperatively and who required prolonged mechanical ventilation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)351-353
Number of pages3
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2004


  • Bronchopleural fistula
  • Pneumonectomy
  • Thymus flap

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery


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