Thoracoscopic lobectomy: Is a training program feasible with low postoperative morbidity?

Andrea Billè, Lawrence Okiror, Wolfram Karenovics, Debajeet Choudhuri, Tom Routledge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To evaluate the feasibility of training program in video assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) lobectomy comparing intraoperative and postoperative data of patients operated on by an established consultant and trainees. Methods: Retrospective analysis of 100 consecutive patients who underwent VATS lobectomies between May 2008 and May 2012. 66 patients were operated on by an established consultant (Group A) and 34 by trainees (Group B). Results: The groups were comparable for clinical characteristics and pathological staging. The mean operating time in Group A was 125 ± 30 min and in Group B was 133 ± 26 min (p = 0.18). The rate of conversion was similar in both groups: 9.1 % in Group A and 8.8 % in Group B (p = 0.6). The complication rate was comparable (p = 0.4): 36.3 % in Group A and 32.3 % in Group B. Median time to drain removal and median length of hospital stay was 3 and 5.5 days in Group A and 3 and 5 days in Group B, showing no statistical differences between the two groups (p = 0.3 and 0.5). There were no differences in term of long-term complications between the two groups. Conclusion: Our study showed that a training program in VATS lobectomy is feasible, without increasing the operative time, conversion rate, postoperative complication, time to drain removal, and length of hospital stay.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)409-413
Number of pages5
JournalGeneral Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2013


  • Complications
  • Conversion rate
  • Lung cancer
  • Training program
  • VATS lobectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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