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Lung volume reduction surgery shown to prolong and improve life for some emphysema patients

Posted Jul 24 2009 11:24pm

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Lung volume reduction surgery (LVRS) can have a significantly beneficial effect in patients with severe emphysema, according to the first ever study to randomize emphysema patients to receive either LVRS or non-surgical medical care.

“We found lung reduction surgery is good treatment alternative for selected emphysema patients since it not only improves survival but also meaningfully improves quality of life for a period of at least five years after the operation,” said lead author of the study, Roberto Benzo, M.D., MSc. of the Mayo Clinic. “Patients who underwent LVRS, with the exception of those who had non-upper-lobe-predominant emphysema, had both a survival and quality of life benefit when compared to similar patients undergoing medical treatment only.”

The results of the National Emphysema Treatment Trial (NETT) study were reported in the August 1 issue of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, published by the American Thoracic Society.

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