What is Thoracic Surgery?
Thoracic surgery department is a specialty of medicine that diagnoses and treats diseases of other organs except the breast and heart, which are located in the abdomen from the throat to the upper part of the abdomen. Diseases of the esophagus, mediastinum, lung and chest wall and related areas, starting from the trachea, are the working areas of the thoracic surgery specialist. The diagnosis, treatment and surgical interventions of the diseases of these regions are performed by thoracic surgeons. Organs other than the heart and breast and diseases that develop due to these organs are followed and treated by thoracic surgeons.
Which Diseases Does Thoracic Surgery Treat?
There are many diseases that fall into the study area of thoracic surgery. There are many congenital or functional thoracic surgery diseases of the organs surrounding it, especially the lung. Some of those;
•Chest wall cancers
•Pulmonary water collection
•Inflammations of the pleura
•Chronic lung diseases (COPD)
•Thorax (rib cage) traumas
•Hyperhidrosis (Excessive sweating)
•Congenital thoracic cage diseases can be counted.
Thoracic surgery diagnosis and treatment methods are diverse. Especially with the development of technology, these have diversified and developed. Correct diagnosis is important for the treatment of diseases of organs such as thorax, lungs, trachea and esophagus in the thoracic surgery field. For diagnosis, many analyzes and examinations are applied. In order to diagnose the diseases of this department, diseases are diagnosed by using methods such as blood and urine tests, imaging procedures (MR, ultrasound, chest X-ray, tomography), biopsy, etc. As a result of these analyzes and tests, treatment and surgical methods are evaluated. In the department of thoracic surgery, surgical methods are generally used alongside drug treatment. These are surgical treatment procedures for the relevant organ of the disease. Most of the surgeries are performed using robotic and minimally invasive surgical techniques. Some of these surgical;
•Lung volume reduction surgeries.
•Tracheal stent applications.
•VATS (Videothoracoscopy) methods
•Thoracic cage surgeries. Apart from these, various surgical procedures can be applied depending on the patient's condition.
Removal of tumor cells from the lung, trachea, esophagus, mediastinum, treatment with stent application for esophageal strictures, treatment of thoracic cage problems caused by congenital or post-traumatic trauma with NUSS technique, treatment of infected lung surface in pulmonary tuberculosis, in emphysema patients volume reduction operations, treatment of hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) diseases with EPS method, surgeries for lung perforations and emergency thoracic injuries interventions are performed.
Numerous techniques are used for diagnosis and treatment in thoracic surgery:
Bronchoscopy: Flexible bronchoscopy and rigid bronchoscopy are performed for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases and tumors in the bronchial system and trachea.
Medianoscopy: It is performed for the diagnosis and staging of tumors in the lungs and lymph nodes.
Thoracotomy: Opening of the thorax.
Lobectomy: Removal of part of the diseased area.
Pneumonectomy: It is the process of removing one side of the lung for tumor removal.
Most of the surgeries performed in the field of thoracic surgery are now performed with the closed surgical technique. Open surgeries are now less preferred. Open surgeries with VATS (Videothoracoscopic) method have been replaced by video-assisted surgeries. Thanks to these methods, there have been many advantages such as shortening the recovery period of the patients, less incision sites, and earlier discharge.
The health of the lungs, which is one of the most important organs of our body, is of vital importance. Lung cancers are at the forefront of all cancer cases, especially among the cancer cases that have increased in recent years. In lung cancers, early diagnosis is the most important factor that directly affects the chance of treatment. The chance of treatment in these cancers diagnosed on time has brought positive improvements thanks to the developing drugs and technologies. Although genetic predisposition is a factor in the increase in lung and lung-related pleural cancer cases, the biggest reason is high smoking. Most of the patients in the chest diseases department, which is one of the most intensive outpatient clinics of hospitals in our country, consist of patients with smoking and chronic lung failure due to smoking. In order to protect lung health, whatever the reason may be, it should not be neglected that these reasons should be eliminated, and that regular check-ups should be made in the chest diseases departments for early diagnosis against possible lung diseases.