You are currently viewing How long does lung surgery take?

How long does lung surgery take?

Lung surgery often refers to removing lung tissue for damage repair, a biopsy, to stop the spread of cancer, or the removal of foreign objects such as fluid accumulation or blood in the lungs. When blood may need to be taken from the organ during another surgical procedure, lung surgery may be performed to mitigate its potential effects. Let us read more about lung surgery, why it may be needed, and how long it takes to remove a lung. How Long Does It Take to Recover from A Lung Transplant?

Why may Lung Surgery be needed?

A lung Surgery may be performed:

  • To do a lung tissue biopsy if any suspected abnormal growth/ fluid
  • To perform a lung operation to remove a segment of the lung, an entire lung region known as alone, or the entire lung if it has been affected by cancer.
  • To remove blood from the chest cavity after an accident or other trauma
  • To replace a lung if other lung surgical techniques fail to produce the desired results
  • To eliminate “pulmonary blebs” and stop the lung from collapsing (pneumothorax)
  • Removing part of Lung or segment via key-hole surgery or Open surgery for Lung Cancer.

Types of Lung Surgeries

Thoracotomy: This is a more conventional procedure, often known as open surgery, which involves the surgeon making a cut in the chest wall to provide access to the lung tissue that has to be repaired or removed. The rib cage is divided or a rib is removed during the invasive process.

Video-assisted Thoracoscopy Surgery (VATS): less invasive than open surgery. To assist in the surgical removal of lung tissue, the surgeon inserts tiny incisions in the chest wall and high-intensity light. Due to the size of the incision made, lung surgery are sometimes referred as keyhole surgery and Thoracoscopic and VATS surgery,

Pneumonectomy: A pneumonectomy is the complete removal of a lung that has been irreparably compromised by cancer or destroyed lung.

Lobectomy: To make sure that no airways are obstructed or to prevent cancer from spreading to other areas of the lung and the body, the lung surgeon in India will cut off and remove one of the lobes during a lobectomy.

Wedge resectioning: With this technique, only a part of the lung is removed for cancer or non-cancer.

Segmentectomy: is the surgical removal of a segment of the lung along with the veins and arteries that run through it without removing the entire lobe or wedge.

Sleeve resectioning: There are methods to save lungs, only the affected part of bronchus is resected and the rest of the part being removed.

Lymphadenectomy: When there is lung cancer, lymph nodes are removed by this procedure.

Surgery Procedure

Prior to surgery, you will be put under general anesthetic. You won feel pain because youll be asleep- Open, VATS and Robotic Surgery are options. How Serious Is The Lung Transplant Process

Open surgery refers to lung surgery performed through a thoracotomy. In this operation:

  • On an operating table, you will be in the side position.
  • A surgical incision will be made between two ribs by your surgeon. The cut will pass just beneath the armpit as it travels from the front of your chest wall to your back. These ribs will be divided.
  • To prevent air from entering and exiting your lung during surgery, it will be deflated on this side of your body. This makes operating on the lung for the surgeon simpler.
  • Until your chest is opened and the lung is visible, your surgeon might not be able to determine how much of your lung needs to be removed.
  • The lymph nodes in this region may also be removed by your surgeon.
  • After surgery, one or more drainage tubes will be inserted into your chest to remove air or fluid.
  • After lung surgery, your surgeon will use sutures to close the ribs, muscles, and skin.

Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery:

  • Over your chest wall, your surgeon will make a number of tiny surgical incisions. These cuts will be used to pass small instruments like a video scope (a tube with a tiny camera on end) through.
  • After that, your surgeon might remove all or part of your lung, drain any excess fluid or blood, or perform other operations.
  • To remove any built-up fluids, one or more tubes will be inserted into your chest.
  • Compared to open lung surgery, this method results in significantly less pain and a quicker recovery.

How Long Does a Lung Operation take?

No two procedures or surgeries are the same and the answer to the question is – how long does lung removal surgery take? This may be different from the answer to the question- how long does a lung cancer operation take? how long does a lung operation take depends on which kind of lung surgery is being performed, what is the kind of damage to the lungs, and kind of lung surgeries take different times:

Exact time line is difficult to say. Doctors can look at CT-Scan and the condition of the patient and then will tell before taking it up for lung surgery in india.

How long does it take to recover from lung surgery

Recovery After the Procedure:

After an open thoracotomy, the majority of patients stay in the hospital for 5 to 7 days although it also depends on multiple factors like age, blood loss, Nutrition status of the patient. For instance, A video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery typically requires a shorter hospital stay. After surgery, all patients are shifted to intensive care unit (ICU).

Recovery in the hospital: will require you to:

  • As soon as possible following surgery, be instructed to sit up on the side of the bed and move around.
  • Have tubes for air and fluid drainage coming out of the side of your chest.
  • Care of Chest Tube done in post-op period.
  • Take painkillers orally or through an IV (a tube that goes into your veins). You can do this to manage how much pain medication you receive.
  • Asked you to breathe deeply frequently to help fend off infection and pneumonia. Exercises that include deep breathing can aid in expanding the operated-on lung. Until your lung fully expands, your chest tube(s) will stay in place.

Recovery At Home

How long it takes to recover from lung surgery at home can be challenging as lung surgery is an invasive procedure, and recovery from any kind of operation takes time. It is common to feel symptoms like:

Fatigue: This is a common side effect after lung surgery, and the patient may have extreme fatigue-related lethargy. Youll need to eat well, occasionally a recovery diet after lung surgery is advised, take lots of naps, and avoid traveling.

Breathlessness: While lung surgery should primarily alleviate this symptom, it might be required to see a pulmonologist after the procedure. In the interim, deep breathing exercises and relaxation techniques help.

Hair loss & skin rash: Drugs administered after lung surgery may cause side effects including skin rashes and hair loss. As you heal, its important to stay in touch with the specialty hospital to make sure that symptoms don cause new problems.

Mouth and throat pain: During recuperation, soreness in the area of the throat that leads to the mouth is possible. This condition will pass with time, and the patient will be given a post-lung surgery diet that includes nourishing but softer and more moist foods to speed up recovery.


Making the decision to have lung surgery can be extremely intimidating. On the other hand, surgery can be a very effective treatment for lung cancer and other surgically treatable lung diseases. Your cancer may be cured in certain cases by removing all or part of the afflicted lung.

Surgery for lung cancer is a significant procedure. Afterward, give yourself time to recover.

Before your procedure, go over the recuperation process with your doctor so youll know what to anticipate. Learn how long it will take you to heal, what extra safety measures you should take, and which symptoms (fever, wound drainage) require a visit from your doctor.


1. What are the risks of a thoracotomy?

Every surgery comes with its own risks. Risks of this surgery include:

The lungs failure to expand

  • Damage to the blood vessels or lungs
  • The necessity of a chest tube following surgery
  • Persistent air leak
  • Recurring fluid accumulation in the chest cavity
  • Diaphragmatic, esophageal, or tracheal injury
  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Heart rhythm problems
  • Death

2. How long does robotic lung surgery take?

A form of minimally invasive surgery called robotic thoracic surgery is used in thoracic surgeries for certain types of lung cancer. It can be used to remove damaged lung tissue and possibly adjacent lymph nodes. It is also known as robotic-assisted thoracic surgery. The procedure usually takes between 1 to 1 ½ hour.

Leave a Reply