Thoracoscopic surgery in the management of pediatric malignancies: A multicentric survey of the Italian Society of Videosurgery in Infancy

C. Esposito, M. Lima, G. Mattioli, L. Mastroianni, G. Riccipetitoni, G. Monguzzi, G. Zanon, G. Cecchetto, A. Settimi, V. Jasonni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Few reports have elucidated the role of minimally invasive surgery (MIS) for pediatric malignancies. This study aimed to review the results of a multicenter study on the management of thoracic tumors in children using MIS. Methods: A 5-year retrospective review of all MIS procedures for the treatment of pediatric malignancies performed in seven centers belonging to the Italian Society of Videosurgey in Infancy is reported. The data from 145 pediatric oncologic patients (80 girls and 65 boys) ages 30 days to 17 years (median, 7.2 years) were analyzed. Of the procedures performed, 87 were laparoscopies (60%), 55 were thoracoscopies (38%), and 3 were lumboscopies (2%). This study focused only on the results of the 55 thoracoscopic procedures performed for diagnostic purposes in 19 cases (34.6%) and for therapeutic purposes in 36 cases (65.4%). Results: The duration of surgery was 15 to 180 min (median, 65 min). Metastasectomies were performed for various etiologies in 31 of the 55 cases. Of the 55 patients, 5 underwent resection of a mediastinal tumor, and 19 underwent a diagnostic thoracoscopy. During a mean follow-up period of 25.6 months, 2 (3.6%) of the 55 patients experienced perioperative complications. Conclusions: The role of MIS in tumor resection for children is currently limited, but may be used in individual cases when the preoperative workup shows it to be feasible. Its indication is strictly dependent on the thoracoscopic experience of the surgeon and the tumor site for preoperative imaging techniques. When the indication for thoracoscopy is correct, this approach has high therapeutic applicability (65.4% in our series). Our preliminary experience shows that careful patient selection and an appropriate level of technical skill make thoracoscopy a reasonable and safe option for the treatment of pediatric malignancies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1772-1775
Number of pages4
JournalSurgical Endoscopy and Other Interventional Techniques
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


  • Children
  • Minimally invasive surgery
  • MIS
  • Oncology
  • Thoracoscopy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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