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Curr Opin Pulm Med. 1999 Sep;5(5):284-6.

The role of thoracic surgery in diagnosing interstitial lung disease.

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Sarcoidosis Clinic, Niguarda Hospital, Milan, Italy.


In this article, the current status of thoracic surgery options for reaching a diagnosis in interstitial lung disease is described. When surgery is needed, mediastinoscopy is the first step in cases of suspected stage I or II sarcoidosis. If this is not the case, video-assisted thoracoscopy is currently preferred to open lung biopsy because the need for analgesia lessened, less blood is lost, the operative time is shorter, the complication rate is lower, and the postoperative stay is shorter. In some cases, video-assisted thoracoscopy may also be preferred to mediastinoscopy, especially in young women, for cosmetic reasons.

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