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Thoracic/Lung Surgery

For patients with early stage lung cancer that has not spread beyond the lung, surgery offers the best chance for a cure. Our thoracic surgeons have extensive experience performing minimally invasive surgery to precisely remove tumors while preserving as much healthy lung tissue and function as possible.

At NorthShore, we use the da Vinci® Xi HD Surgical System to perform thoracic surgeries for both malignant and benign lung conditions. We were one of the first centers in the Chicago area to pioneer advanced robotic thoracic surgery for the treatment of lung cancer. Our reputation and the outcomes we achieve have made us one of the highest volume hospital systems for robotic thoracic surgery in the region.

Robotic procedures involve the insertion of surgical instruments and a small video camera through tiny incisions made in the chest. The camera provides the “eyes” for the surgical team, while the ultra-slim endoscopic tools serve as the “hands” to remove diseased tissue. The robotic platform allows the surgeon to have 3D visualization. Specialized robotic instruments provide our specialists with more precise control than traditional video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), offering more range of motion than the human hand within the chest cavity.

Depending on the location and size of the tumor, lung cancer surgery may involve the removal of a lobe (lobectomy) or a smaller section of lung called a segment (segmentectomy). Our surgeons also perform wedge resections to remove even smaller wedge-shaped pieces of lung tissue containing the cancerous tumor for patients with more limited lung function.

While surgery for patients with advanced lung cancer may not offer a cure, it can offer relief from symptoms such as excess fluid around the lungs and/or blockages in the airway. Our thoracic surgeons are skilled in performing drainage procedures (pleurodesis or pleurex) as well as stenting or ablation techniques to improve oxygen flow so patients can breathe more comfortably.

For More Information

For more information about thoracic/lung surgery, please call 847.570.1700.