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Importance of preoperative imaging with 64-row three-dimensional multidetector computed tomography for safer video-assisted thoracic surgery in lung cancer



Video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) has recently been adopted for complicated anatomical lung resections. During these thoracoscopic procedures, surgeons view the operative field on a two-dimensional (2-D) video monitor and cannot palpate the organ directly, thus frequently encountering anatomical difficulties. This study aimed to estimate the usefulness of preoperative three-dimensional (3-D) imaging of thoracic organs.


We compared the preoperative 64-row three-dimensional multidetector computed tomography (3DMDCT) findings of lung cancer-affected thoracic organs to the operative findings.


In comparison to the operative findings, the branches of pulmonary arteries, veins, and bronchi were well defined in the 3D-MDCT images of 27 patients.


3D-MDCT imaging is useful for preoperatively understanding the individual thoracic anatomy in lung cancer surgery. This modality can therefore contribute to safer anatomical pulmonary operations, especially in VATS.

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Akiba, T., Marushima, H., Harada, J. et al. Importance of preoperative imaging with 64-row three-dimensional multidetector computed tomography for safer video-assisted thoracic surgery in lung cancer. Surg Today 39, 844–847 (2009).

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Key words

  • Lung/mediastinum
  • Lung cancer
  • Video-assisted thoracic surgery
  • Pulmonary artery
  • Three-dimensional computed tomography