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Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (VATS) for Lung Cancer

Video-Assisted Thoracoscopic Surgery (VATS) for Lung Cancer

Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) is a surgery that may be done to remove lung cancer.

VATS is a less invasive procedure than a regular open chest surgery (thoracotomy), where the chest is cut open and the ribs are spread apart to allow access to the lungs. VATS uses several small cuts (incisions) so a tiny camera and special tools can be inserted into the chest and lung to remove cancer.

VATS also allows for a faster recovery than open chest surgery. And there are fewer problems during and after surgery.

Last Revised: May 9, 2013

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Michael Seth Rabin, MD - Medical Oncology

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