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Reoperation for postoperative bleeding following pulmonary resection: a report of a single-center experience

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The variety and incidence of postoperative complications seem to have changed with recent progress in thoracic surgery. This study attempted to improve our recognition of postoperative bleeding.


Among 1143 patients undergoing pulmonary resection for pulmonary nodules, ten underwent surgical treatment for postoperative bleeding. Clinical and pathologic data were analyzed. Additionally, the relationship between the bleeding point and an increased amount of drained bloody effusion before the second operation was analyzed.


The bleeding point was recognized in eight cases: the intercostal artery (n = 4), the lung (n = 2), aberrant vessel of the apex of the lung (n = 1) and the bronchial artery (n = 1). The bleeding points were unknown in two cases in whom the decision to perform a second operation was delayed. Potential reasons or influential factors for bleeding were stapling complications (n = 4), low coagulation ability (n = 2) and intraoperative injury (n = 1). We experienced two cases in which intercostal arterial bleeding was induced by scratching the thoracic wall or the vertebra with the edge of the reinforced stapling line or the sharp edge of a broken staple at the first operation. We divided patients into three groups based on the interval between operations. Bleeding from the arteries seemed to show a higher rate of bleeding per hour than that from the lung parenchyma.


The bleeding points and speculated reasons for bleeding varied among patients. We were able to cure all ten cases. It might be dependent on the rapid decision of reoperation in cases with arterial bleeding was suspected.

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Correspondence to Motoki Yano.

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All authors declare no conflicts of interest in the present study.

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Yano, M., Numanami, H., Akiyama, T. et al. Reoperation for postoperative bleeding following pulmonary resection: a report of a single-center experience. Gen Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 67, 608–614 (2019).

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