Which factors affect pulmonary function after lung metastasectomy?

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Background: Pulmonary metastasectomy is an accepted procedure in selected patients, very often requiring multiple non-anatomical resections. Although it is intuitive that functional loss is proportional to the number and extent of pulmonary resections, this link has never been proved and is the hypothesis behind this study. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed pulmonary function changes after lung metastasectomy. Baseline and postoperative spirometric values were evaluated and their changes were correlated to (a) number of resections, (b) extent of resections and (c) intervals between surgery. Results: Sixty-six patients were enrolled (31 men, mean age 56 years, range: 23-75); mean interval between surgery: 54.5 days; mean extent of resection: 11.45 cm; mean number of resections: 3. Preoperative mean spirometric values were: FEV1 2.73 l (97.75%); FVC 3.11 l (95.50%); DLCO/AV 1.21 l (99.80%). Mean changes in FEV1, FCV and DLCO/AV were -13.4%, -12.4% and +1.2% respectively. Patients receiving three or more non-anatomical resections had functional loss similar to those undergoing lobectomy. The extent of total resection (>11 cm, p <0.05) and the interval between surgery (>90 days, p <0.0001) influenced FEV1 and FVC modifications. At three months none of these functional modifications remained. Sex, age, side of the operation and histology of primary tumor did not affect spirometric changes. Conclusions: Spirometric changes after pulmonary metastasectomy are affected by total volume lung parenchyma resected within the first 90 days. Functional loss after three or more non-anatomical resections is comparable to that recorded after lobectomy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)792-796
Number of pages5
JournalEuropean Journal of Cardio-thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2009


  • Alveolar volume
  • Carbon monoxide lung diffusion capacity
  • Forced expiratory volume in 1 s
  • Forced vital capacity
  • Pulmonary metastasectomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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