Video-mediastinoscopy in Management of Patients With Lung Cancer: A Preliminary Study

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Cervical mediastinoscopy is widely employed for biopsy of mediastinal lymph nodes and staging of lung cancer. The application of video-assisted technology to mediastinoscopy in a series of patients with lung cancer has not been reported. Preliminary experience with the use of video-mediastinoscopy in diagnosis and staging of lung cancer is presented. Fifteen patients with lung cancer were studied. Results of previous computed tomography scans had shown the presence of enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes in the retrovascular plane in all of the cases. Video-mediastinoscopy was performed under general anesthesia using a specifically designed rigid scope connected to a mono–charged-coupled device video camera (model INH 002756; Karl Storz-Endoskope, Tuttlingen, Germany). Neither fatalities nor major complications related to the procedure were observed. In all cases, video-mediastinoscopy proved useful for diagnosis or staging of lung cancer, therefore contributing to clinical decision making. The optimal visualization of mediastinal structure and the possibility for the surgeon to operate with both hands are appreciable characteristics of this technique.

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