Interventional pulmonology is a relatively new field in pulmonary medicine. Interventional pulmonology uses endoscopy and other tools to diagnose and treat conditions in the lungs and chest.
These procedures may be offered by pulmonologists (lung specialists) who have undergone extra training. Cardiothoracic and other surgeons also routinely perform interventional pulmonology procedures.
Severely impaired lung function as measured by
breathing tests or a uniform pattern of
emphysema throughout the lungs.
non-upper lung emphysema and who are able to exercise for a longer time than
other people with COPD.
Certain other serious medical
For other people LVRS, compared to medical treatment, may
provide an increased ability to exercise and may result in fewer symptoms. LVRS
also can reduce the number of COPD exacerbations for some people.3 But it does not improve the survival rate compared to medical
treatment, except for people who have emphysema mainly in the upper portion of
the lungs and who are not able to exercise well even after pulmonary
candidates for LVRS is subjective, criteria identifying good candidates for
LVRS include people:5
Who have severe emphysema that does not respond
to medical therapy.
Who are younger than 75 to 80 years
Who have not smoked for at least 4 months.
have reasonable expectations of surgery results.
Who have areas of
the lung that can be targeted.
Who have severe difficulty
breathing, as determined by breathing tests.
Decision to have the surgery
The decision to have
this surgery is not an easy one. Not all patients who have emphysema or COPD
will benefit from this surgery. Detailed testing is needed to find out if a
person is likely to be helped by LVRS. Talk with your doctor about all of the
treatment options available for COPD.