Discharging Patients by Postoperative Day One After Robotic Anatomic Pulmonary Resection
BACKGROUND:Our objective is to assess the feasibility and safety of discharging patients by postoperative day one (POD1) after robotic segmentectomy and lobectomy, and to describe outcomes for patients. METHODS:A retrospective analysis was made of a prospectively collected database of a quality improvement initiative by a single surgeon. Factors associated with discharge by POD1 were evaluated using a multivariate logistic regression model. RESULTS:From January 2018 to July 2020, of 253 patients who underwent robotic anatomic pulmonary resection, 134 (53%) were discharged by POD1, 67% after segmentectomy and 41% after lobectomy. Discharge by POD1 improved with experience and was achieved in 97% of patients after segmentectomy and 68% after lobectomy in the final quartile. Thirty-one patients (12%) were discharged home with a chest tube, including 7 (2.8%) on POD1. On multivariate analysis, never smokers and segmentectomy were associated with discharge by POD1. Conversely, decreased baseline performance status and perioperative complications were associated with discharge after POD1. There were 10 minor morbidities (4%), 6 major morbidities (2.4%), and no 30- or 90-day mortality. There were 4 readmissions (1.6%), of which 1 (0.4%) was after POD1 discharge. Patient satisfaction remained high throughout the study period. CONCLUSIONS:With experience and communication, select patients can be discharged home on POD1 after robotic segmentectomy and lobectomy with excellent outcomes and high satisfaction. Discharge by POD1 was associated with never smokers and segmentectomy, and inversely associated with decreased baseline performance status and perioperative complications.
Beyond the learning curve: a review of complex cases in robotic thoracic surgery
The number of thoracic surgery cases performed on the robotic platform has increased steadily over the last two decades. An increasing number of surgeons are training on the robotic system, which like any new technique or technology, has a progressive learning curve. Central to establishing a successful robotic program is the development of a dedicated thoracic robotic team that involves anesthesiologists, nurses, and bed-side assistants. With an additional surgeon console, the robot is an excellent platform for teaching. Compared to current methods of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), the robot offers improved wristed motion, a magnified, high definition three-dimensional vision, and greater surgeon control of the operation. These advantages are paired with integrated adjunctive technology such as infrared imaging. For pulmonary resection, these advantages of the robotic platform have translated into several clinical benefits, such as fewer overall complications, reduced pain, shorter length of stay, better postoperative pulmonary function, lower operative blood loss, and a lower 30-day mortality rate compared to open thoracotomy. With increased experience, cases of greater complexity are being performed. This review article details the process of becoming an experienced robotic thoracic surgeon and discusses a series of challenging cases in robotic thoracic surgery that a surgeon may encounter "beyond the learning curve". Nearly all thoracic surgery can now be approached robotically, including sleeve lobectomy, pneumonectomy, resection of large pulmonary and mediastinal masses, decortication, thoracic duct ligation, rib resection, and pulmonary resection after prior chest surgery and/or chemoradiation.
Technique, Outcomes with Navigational Bronchoscopy Using Indocyanine Green for Robotic Segmentectomy
BACKGROUND:Our objectives are to present our outcomes of robotic segmentectomy and our preferred technique for nodule localization using indocyanine green both bronchoscopically and intravenously. METHODS:This is a retrospective review of a consecutive series of patients scheduled for robotic segmentectomy from a single surgeon's prospectively collected database. RESULTS:Between January 2010 and October 2018, there were 245 consecutive patients who underwent planned robotic segmentectomy by one surgeon, of which 93 (38%) received indocyanine green via electromagnetic navigational bronchoscopy and all 245 received intravenous indocyanine green. Median time for navigational bronchoscopy was 9 minutes. Navigational bronchoscopy with indocyanine green correctly identified the lesion in 80 cases (86%). Our preferred technique is: 0.5 mL of 25 mg of indocyanine green diluted in 10 mL of saline given bronchoscopically, followed by a 0.5 mL saline flush, staying at least 4 mm from the pleural surface. The remaining 9.5 mL of indocyanine green is administered intravenously after pulmonary artery ligation. An R0 resection was achieved in all 245 patients, a median of 17 lymph nodes were resected, and the average length of stay was 3.1 days (range 1-21 days). Major morbidity occurred in 3 patients and there were no 30 or 90-day mortalities. CONCLUSIONS:Robotic segmentectomy is safe with excellent early clinical outcomes. In our series, electromagnetic navigational bronchoscopy and indocyanine green localization is efficient and effective at identifying the target lesion. Intravenous indocyanine green delineates the intersegmental plane.
Tocilizumab Accelerates Recovery in Patients With Severe COVID-19 Pneumonia on Venovenous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation
One-Year Outcomes With Venovenous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation Support for Severe COVID-19
BACKGROUND:Severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can cause acute respiratory failure requiring mechanical ventilation. Venovenous (VV) extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) has been used in patients in whom conventional mechanical ventilatory support has failed. To date, published data have focused on survival from ECMO and survival to discharge. In addition to survival to discharge, this study reports 1-year follow-up data for patients who were successfully discharged from the hospital. METHODS:A single-institution, retrospective review of all patients with severe COVID-19 who were cannulated for VV-ECMO between March 10, 2020 and May 1, 2020 was performed. A multidisciplinary ECMO team evaluated, selected, and managed patients with ECMO support. The primary outcome of this study was survival to discharge. Available 1-year follow-up data are also reported. RESULTS:A total of 30 patients were supported with VV-ECMO, and 27 patients (90%) survived to discharge. All patients were discharged home or to acute rehabilitation on room air, except for 1 patient (3.7%), who required supplemental oxygen therapy. At a median follow-up of 10.8 months (interquartile range [IQR], 8.9-14.4 months) since ECMO cannulation, survival was 86.7%, including 1 patient who underwent lung transplantation. Of the patients discharged from the hospital, 44.4% (12/27) had pulmonary function testing, with a median percent predicted forced expiratory volume of 100% (IQR, 91%-110%). For survivors, a 6-minute walk test was performed in 59.3% (16/27), with a median value of 350 m (IQR, 286-379 m). CONCLUSIONS:A well-defined patient selection and management strategy of VV-ECMO support in patients with severe COVID-19 resulted in exceptional survival to discharge that was sustained at 1-year after ECMO cannulation.
Thoracic surgery outcomes for patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019
OBJECTIVE:As the Coronavirus Disease 2019 pandemic continues, appropriate management of thoracic complications from Coronavirus Disease 2019 needs to be determined. Our objective is to evaluate which complications occurring in patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019 require thoracic surgery and to report the early outcomes. METHODS:This study is a single-institution retrospective case series at New York University Langone Health Manhattan campus evaluating patients with confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019 infection who were hospitalized and required thoracic surgery from March 13 to July 18, 2020. RESULTS:From March 13 to August 8, 2020, 1954 patients were admitted to New York University Langone Health for Coronavirus Disease 2019. Of these patients, 13 (0.7%) required thoracic surgery. Two patients (15%) required surgery for complicated pneumothoraces, 5 patients (38%) underwent pneumatocele resection, 1 patient (8%) had an empyema requiring decortication, and 5 patients (38%) developed a hemothorax that required surgery. Three patients (23%) died after surgery, 9 patients (69%) were discharged, and 1 patient (8%) remains in the hospital. No healthcare providers were positive for Coronavirus Disease 2019 after the surgeries. CONCLUSIONS:Given the 77% survival, with a majority of patients already discharged from the hospital, thoracic surgery is feasible for the small percent of patients hospitalized with Coronavirus Disease 2019 who underwent surgery for complex pneumothorax, pneumatocele, empyema, or hemothorax. Our experience also supports the safety of surgical intervention for healthcare providers who operate on patients with Coronavirus Disease 2019.
Hemoadsorption for management of patients on veno-venous ECMO support for severe COVID-19 acute respiratory distress syndrome
BACKGROUND AND AIM/OBJECTIVE:Patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) develop a profound cytokine-mediated pro-inflammatory response. This study reports outcomes in 10 patients with COVID-19 supported on veno-venous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VV-ECMO) who were selected for the emergency use of a hemoadsorption column integrated in the ECMO circuit. MATERIALS AND METHODS/METHODS:Pre and posttreatment, clinical data, and inflammatory markers were assessed to determine the safety and feasibility of using this system and to evaluate the clinical effect. RESULTS:During hemoadsorption, median levels of interleukin (IL)-2R, IL-6, and IL-10 decreased by 54%, 86%, and 64%, respectively. Reductions in other markers were observed for lactate dehydrogenase (-49%), ferritin (-46%), d-dimer (-7%), C-reactive protein (-55%), procalcitonin (-76%), and lactate (-44%). Vasoactive-inotrope scores decreased significantly over the treatment interval (-80%). The median hospital length of stay was 53 days (36-85) and at 90-days post cannulation, survival was 90% which was similar to a group of patients without the use of hemoadsorption. CONCLUSIONS:Addition of hemoadsorption to VV-ECMO in patients with severe COVID-19 is feasible and reduces measured cytokine levels. However, in this small series, the precise impact on the overall clinical course and survival benefit still remains unknown.
Incidence, Management, and Outcomes of Patients With COVID-19 and Pneumothorax
BACKGROUND:Our objective was to report the incidence, management, and outcomes of patients who developed a secondary pneumothorax while admitted for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). METHODS:A single-institution, retrospective review of patients admitted for COVID-19 with a diagnosis of pneumothorax between March 1, 2020, and April 30, 2020, was performed. The primary assessment was the incidence of pneumothorax. Secondarily, we analyzed clinical outcomes of patients requiring tube thoracostomy, including those requiring operative intervention. RESULTS:From March 1, 2020, to April 30, 2020, 118 of 1595 patients (7.4%) admitted for COVID-19 developed a pneumothorax. Of these, 92 (5.8%) required tube thoracostomy drainage for a median of 12 days (interquartile range 5-25 days). The majority of patients (95 of 118, 80.5%) were on mechanical ventilation at the time of pneumothorax, 17 (14.4%) were iatrogenic, and 25 patients (21.2%) demonstrated tension physiology. Placement of a large-bore chest tube (20 F or greater) was associated with fewer tube-related complications than a small-bore tube (14 F or less) (14 vs 26 events, PÂ = .011). Six patients with pneumothorax (5.1%) required operative management for a persistent alveolar-pleural fistula. In patients with pneumothorax, median hospital stay was 36 days (interquartile range 20-63 days) and in-hospital mortality was significantly higher than for those without pneumothorax (58% vs 13%, P < .001). CONCLUSIONS:The incidence of secondary pneumothorax in patients admitted for COVID-19 is 7.4%, most commonly occurring in patients requiring mechanical ventilation, and is associated with an in-hospital mortality rate of 58%. Placement of large-bore chest tubes is associated with fewer complications than small-bore tubes.
Commentary: Reducing the need for recovery
Impact of CytoSorb Hemoadsorption on Sedation Requirements in Patients With Severe COVID-19 on Venovenous Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation
Hemoadsorption with CytoSorb has been used as an adjunct in the treatment of severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related respiratory failure. It remains unknown if CytoSorb hemoadsorption will alter sedative and analgesic dosing in critically ill patients on venovenous extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (VV-ECMO). We conducted a retrospective review of patients with severe COVID-19 requiring VV-ECMO for respiratory support. Patients who were enrolled in a clinical study of CytoSorb were compared with patients on VV-ECMO alone. Data were collected for the 72-hour CytoSorb therapy and an additional 72 hours post-CytoSorb, or a corresponding control time period. Sedative and analgesic doses were totaled for each day and converted to midazolam or fentanyl equivalents, respectively. The primary endpoint, change in sedative and analgesic requirements over time, were compared using a two-way mixed analysis of variance. Of the 30 patients cannulated for VV-ECMO for COVID-19, 4 were excluded, leaving 8 patients in the CytoSorb arm and 18 in the Control. There was no effect of CytoSorb therapy on midazolam equivalents over the 72-hour therapy (p = 0.71) or the 72 hours post-CytoSorb (p = 0.11). In contrast, there was a significant effect of CytoSorb therapy on fentanyl equivalents over the first 72 hours (p = 0.01), but this was not consistent over the 72-hours post-CytoSorb (p = 0.23). CytoSorb therapy led to significant increases in analgesic requirements without impacting sedative requirements. Further research is needed to define the relevance of CytoSorb hemoadsorption on critical care pharmacotherapy.