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J Thorac Oncol. 2012 Apr;7(4):737-43. doi: 10.1097/JTO.0b013e31824ab6c5.

Pleurectomy/decortication is superior to extrapleural pneumonectomy in the multimodality management of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma.

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Department of Thoracic Surgery, London and Division of Cancer Studies, King's College London, London, United Kingdom.



To compare the outcomes of two different multimodality regimens involving neoadjuvant chemotherapy, extrapleural pneumonectomy (EPP) and adjuvant radiotherapy versus pleurectomy/decortication (P/D), hyperthermic pleural lavage with povidone-iodine, and adjuvant chemotherapy in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma.


Nonrandomized prospective study of patients treated by multimodality therapy and operated on between January 2004 and June 2011. Second-line treatments were administered when appropriate. Survival and prognostic factors were analyzed by the Kaplan Meier method, log rank test, and Cox regression analysis.


Twenty-five consecutive patients received neoadjuvant chemotherapy, 22 underwent EPP, and 17 received adjuvant radiotherapy. Over the same period, 54 consecutive patients underwent P/D and hyperthermic pleural lavage and received prophylactic radiotherapy and adjuvant chemotherapy. The 30-day mortality rate was 4.5%in the EPP group and nil in the P/D group. Fifteen patients (68%) in the EPP group and 15 (27.7%) in the P/D group experienced complications. There were no differences between the EPP and P/D groups for age, sex, histology, pathologic stage, and nodal status. Trimodality therapy was completed by 68%of the patients in the EPP group and 100%in the P/D group. Survival was significantly better in the P/D group: median survival was 23 months versus 12.8 months, 2-year survival was 49%versus 18.2 %, and 5-year survival was 30.1%versus 9%, respectively (p = 0.004). At multivariate analysis, epithelioid histology, P/D, and completeness of resection were independent prognostic factors.


In our experience, P/D, hyperthermic pleural lavage with povidone-iodine, and adjuvant chemotherapy were superior to neoadjuvant chemotherapy, EPP, and adjuvant radiotherapy.

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