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Open Access Open Badges Research article

Completion pneumonectomy for lung cancer treatment: early and long term outcomes

Peng Zhang, Chao Jiang, Wenxin He, Nan Song, Xiao Zhou* and Gening Jiang*

Author Affiliations

Department of Thoracic Surgery, Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, School of Medicine, Tongji University, Shanghai, Peoples Republic of China

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Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery 2012, 7:107  doi:10.1186/1749-8090-7-107

Published: 9 October 2012



To analyze the experience of completion pneumonectomy for lung cancer at a single institution in China.


From January 1988 to December 2007, 92 patients underwent completion pneumonectomy for the treatment of lung cancer. The indications were second primary lung cancer (n = 51), Local metastasis (n = 37) and Lung metastasis (n = 4). The median interval between the primary operation and CP was 24.4 months (1.5-145 m).


There was no intraoperative deaths. The CP procedure lasted 4.3 h (1.5-8 h). Blood loss in the CP performance was 1854.5 ml (200-9100 ml) 9 (9.78%) patients died in the postoperative period: pulmonary embolism (n = 2), disseminated intravascular coagulation (DIC) after the multisystem failure (n = 1), respiratory failure after contralateral pneumonia (n = 5), bronchopleural fistula (BPF) with acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) (n = 1) 31(33.7%) patients had at least one major nonfatal complication. The 1, 3 and 5 year survival rates were 81%, 26% and 14% respectively.


Completion pneumonectomy for lung cancer is a safe surgical procedure for the skilled surgeon though it has a relatively higher complications and the long-term survival is acceptable.

Lung cancer; Completion pneumonectomy; Follow-up