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Journal and News Scan
LoMauro and colleagues measured tidal volume and ribcage expansion during rest and exercise to evaluate functional recovery after minimally invasive thoracic surgery. Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) preserved these kinematic measures better than posterolateral thoracotomy, and the advantage was observed over two postoperative months. Patients compensated for restriction by shifting the expansion to the contralateral thorax after VATS and to the abdomen after thoracotomy.
Bhagat and colleagues analyzed the rate of unplanned hospital readmission from 2012 to 2015 using the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program Participant Use File. Thoracoscopic surgery was associated with a higher rate of postdischarge complications, a finding related to the shorter length of stay for these patients. Open surgery was associated with a higher rate of related unplanned readmissions, but after risk adjustment, open and thoracoscopic surgery readmissions were not different.
An inspiring presidential address from the new EACTS president.
The president of Brazil had stents placed for coronary artery obstructions over the weekend.
The first transcatheter implantation of a retrievable aortic valve in China occurred at the Second Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University.
Drugs and Devices
A UK-based company is developing a more mobile, more affordable surgical robot.
Boston Scientific announced that it will indefinitely delay seeking US Food and Drug Administration approval for its Lotus Edge transcatheter valve.
Puerto Rico’s ongoing recovery from Hurricane Maria could affect surgical device supplies.
The European Medicines Agency will move from London to Amsterdam.
Research, Trials, and Funding
Researchers from the University of California, San Diego, in the US, find that lobectomy for early stage lung cancer provides better survival than stereotactic body radiation therapy.
A review of randomized controlled trials in pediatric heart surgery suggests that many studies do not provide sufficiently robust evidence.
A new imaging technology could provide higher resolution views of important tissues in minimally invasive surgery.
Biomedical engineers from Duke University in North Carolina, US, have implanted patches of induced cardiomyocytes onto rodent hearts; the implants showed near mature electrical and mechanical function.
Sato and colleagues applied elliptic Fourier analysis to morphological aortic measurements from 80 patients with uncomplicated type B aortic dissection. The patients were divided in two groups according to aortic enlargement during follow-up. The shape of the aortic diameter at initial operation was a significant predictor of further morphologic development.
An interesting dilemma posed by a tattoo providing advanced care directives.
Newspaper and prime time TV advertisements are beginning in the US today that detail the medical toll that smoking exacts on its victims. The ads are paid for by big tobacco based on a court order from 2006 that has finally survived the appeal process. A spokesperson for one of the companies stated that they hope to "develop less risky tobacco products." The ads emphasize that smoking causes nearly 500,000 deaths annually in the US.
The medical care oversight committee for Hertfordshire County, England, has banned elective surgery for the obese and for those who are actively smoking. Obese patients must lose 10% to 15% of their body weight within 9 months to qualify, and smokers must abstain for at least 8 weeks if elective surgery is to be performed. Free counseling to achieve these goals is provided.
Preventza and colleagues present their experience with aortic repair, analyzing prospectively collected data from 129 patients who underwent either a traditional elephant trunk (t-ET) procedure or a modified frozen elephant trunk (FET) procedure that does not use a hybrid graft. The authors found no statistically significant difference in mortality or persistent spinal cord ischemia between patients undergoing a t-ET and those undergoing a modified FET.
This is the kind of video that patients are going to in large numbers. It is a nice description of a CABG case performed at MedStar Union Memorial Hospital in Maryland, USA. Nearly a million hits makes these guys YouTube stars!