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Ann Thorac Surg. 2005 Aug;80(2):423-7.

Preoperative chemotherapy does not increase complications after nonsmall cell lung cancer resection.

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Department of Thoracic Oncology and Chest Disease, Hospices Civils de Lyon, Centre Hospitalier Lyon Sud, Pierre-Benite, France.



Neoadjuvant chemotherapy before resection of nonsmall cell lung cancer seems to increase survival, mainly in the early stage. Risks of postoperative complications after chemotherapy and surgery remain controversial. Here we review our experience with patients treated in one thoracic surgery center.


Patients undergoing resection for nonsmall cell lung cancer after induction chemotherapy between January 1993 and March 2002 were reviewed. Data collected included age, sex, preoperative forced expiratory volume in 1 second (FEV1), hemoglobin, and arterial oxygen pressure tension (PaO2), postoperative complications, and global survival. The main objectives were postoperative mortality and morbidity. Postoperative mortality and morbidity were defined as complications or deaths occurring within 30 days after surgery. Predictive morbidity factors were identified by univariate and multivariate analysis and overall survival by the Kaplan-Meier method.


In all, 114 patients were reviewed. Different induction chemotherapies were used, mainly cisplatin with vinorelbine or gemicitabine. Postoperative mortality was 2 of 114, 1 of 27 after pneumonectomy, and there were no deaths after lobectomy. Complications occurred in 29% of patients (33 of 114), usually infectious pneumonia and anemia requiring transfusion. Preoperative FEV1, hemoglobin, and PaO2 are not associated with morbidity in univariate or multivariate analysis.


Preoperative chemotherapy does not increase postoperative mortality and morbidity after nonsmall cell lung cancer surgery, performed exclusively by thoracic surgeons.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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