This invention is a method for performing lung wedge resection surgeries more accurately, utilizing a novel set of laparoscopic tools. These tools permit wedge resection surgeries to be performed with newly available imaging equipment, capable of bringing “CT-like” imaging to the operating room. As the result of improved surgical accuracy, entire tumors can be removed along with the minimal amount of healthy tissue.
Approximately 55,000 lung wedge resection surgeries are performed in the U.S. These are currently performed without the benefit of imaging. Instead, a surgeon will use finger palpation to cut around a tumorous lesion. With this procedure, there is considerable risk that tumor tissue may be left behind. In order to compensate for this risk, a larger wedge may be taken. Alternatively, surgeons instead may perform entire lobe resections, out of fear that finger palpation may be inaccurate. Currently, about 33,000 lobectomies are performed annually, to some degree because of the risks associated with wedge resections.
Over the last several decades, advances in medical imaging have enabled the ability to clearly visualize cancers within organs. Despite the need to incorporate imaging into surgery to enhance nonanatomatic resections, this imaging has, until the development of these laparoscopic surgical tools, had only limited application in guiding these procedures.
With the potential to achieve greater surgical accuracy, it is to be expected that many of the approximately 90,000 lung resections performed in the U.S. each year will utilize these laparoscopic tools in image-guided procedures This new technology will also likely result in more lung wedge resections in those cases in which entire lobe resections are not necessary.
These devices and improved method can help the surgeon perform wedge resections under image guidance in a convenient, accurate, and effective way.
Wedge resection surgeries
The method has been validated in surgery using a rough prototype of the device.
Stephen Solomon, MD, Chief, Interventional Radiology Service, Memorial Sloan Kettering
U.S. patent application pending