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Ann Thorac Surg. 2001 Mar;71(3):986-8.

Thoracoscopic resection of pulmonary nodules after computed tomographic-guided coil labeling.

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Department of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery, University of Louvain Medical School at Mont-Godinne University Hospital, Yvoir, Belgium.



A limiting factor in performing video-assisted thoracic surgery for resection of peripheral solitary pulmonary nodules has been the recognition of the lesion visually. This study reports our clinical experience of injecting a small metallic marker under computed tomographic scan guidance before the operation, allowing localization of the lesion.


A series of 14 patients underwent video-assisted thoracic surgery for removal of 15 pulmonary nodules situated in the outer third of the lung. Before operation, a radiopaque microcoil was injected just behind the lesion and then used to locate, under fluoroscopy, the area to be resected during thoracoscopy. The technique was evaluated for accuracy, reliability, and ease of use.


Microcoil labeling of peripheral pulmonary nodules allowed in every case a complete resection and a histologic identification of the lesion. It is more stable and accurate than methylene blue dye marking, and it is as easy to perform as computed tomographic scan-guided biopsy. The incidence of complication was small in spite of our inexperience with the technique.


Our experience with microcoil injection shows that it provides consistent and highly accurate marking of pulmonary nodules for video-assisted thoracic surgery, allowing secure resection with a safe margin.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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