Superior vena cava resection with prosthetic replacement for non-small cell lung cancer: Long-term results of a multicentric study

Lorenzo Spaggiari, Pascal Thomas, Pierre Magdeleinat, Haruhiko Kondo, Gilles Rollet, Jean Francois Regnard, Ryosuke Tsuchiya, Ugo Pastorino

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Objectives: Superior vena cava (SVC) resection with prosthetic replacement for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is infrequently performed and oncological results are unclear. To establish a historical benchmark for this extended surgery, we have updated and reviewed data from four international centers. Methods: Data were obtained through retrospective chart review. Prognostic factors were analyzed using first univariate techniques and subsequently multiple regression (logistic regression). Kaplan-Meier overall survival was calculated and prognostic factors examined by log-rank test and the estimation of hazard ratios using Cox regression. Results: From 1985 to 2000, 28 patients underwent SVC resection with prosthetic replacement for NSCLC. During the same period, 65 patients underwent partial SVC resection. Induction treatment was performed in 25% of patients. The resection was done for T involvement in 22 patients (79%), and for N2 involvement in the remaining. There were 12 tracheal sleeve resections, four pneumonectomies, and 12 lobar or sublobar resections with or without bronchoplasty. The median clamping time was 40 min. The median diameter of the prosthesis used was No. 14. Pathological examination showed direct SVC invasion (T4) in 79% of patients, whereas N2 disease was present in 50% of patients. Median intensive care unit and hospital stay were 3 and 20 days, respectively. The postoperative morbidity and mortality were 39 and 14%, respectively. The overall 5-year probability of survival was 15% (median of 9 months, range 0-105 months). Patients who underwent partial SVC resection during the same period had a significantly higher probability of survival (P = 0.03). Induction chemotherapy was associated with a significant increase of postoperative morbidity in multivariate analysis. None of the potential prognostic factors analyzed in multivariate analysis were associated with survival, but the type of resection (sleeve pneumonectomy/pneumonectomy) were borderline significant. Conclusions: SVC resection with prosthetic replacement should not be considered an absolute contraindication in patients with NSCLC; however, the poor oncological results suggest more restrictive and severe criteria of patient selection (mediastinoscopy, induction treatment, no pneumonectomy, no N2 disease).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1080-1086
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2002



  • Advanced lung cancer
  • Extended resection
  • Lung cancer
  • Polytetrafluoroethylene
  • Prosthesis replacement
  • Stage IIIB
  • Superior vena cava resection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery

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