Respiratory Center(Surgery)


Patient Care

1. Mainly we perform surgery for lung cancer. Achieve low-risk surgery especially for lung cancer with difficult comorbidities such as "chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)" and "interstitial pneumonia"

We cover the whole range of respiratory diseases in need of surgical treatments. Lung cancer is the most common diagnosis for which we perform surgery, and it accounts for nearly half of our annual surgery counts.
One of our advantages is to provide treatments to many patients with severe lung cancer accompanied by other diseases such as COPD and interstitial pneumonia. In such lung cancer with other pulmonary diseases, efficacy of chemotherapy and radiotherapy for lung cancer may be limited by the comorbidities, so we hardly expect their therapeutic effect for cancer. Therefore, as a radical treatment to maintain the patients’ quality of life, we perform surgery appropriate for each patient’s condition as much as possible.
Postoperative complications, risks of acute exacerbation, etc. have been considered as problems related to surgery. We carried out many clinical researches, proactively introduced latest equipment and improved our techniques so that we have solved such problems step by step. As a result, now we can prevent almost 100% of postoperative acute exacerbation and complications of lung cancer accompanied by COPD and interstitial pneumonia.
We treat lung cancer in cooperation with specialists in each field such as respiratory medicine, radiology, pathology, rehabilitation, etc. Especially for the patients with impaired pulmonary function or aged patients, we give them a program to recover their pulmonary functions before surgery in cooperation with our rehabilitation department. Preoperative improvement of their pulmonary functions brings a lot of benefits including fewer risks of complications, a shorter recovery time, etc. to the patients. With regard to surgery, we try to devise surgical procedures such as sublobar resection to conserve pulmonary functions and enable the patients to recover smoothly. For advanced lung cancer, we provide multidisciplinary treatments combined chemotherapy using anticancer drug and radiotherapy in cooperation with respiratory medicine and radiology department.
We mainly perform video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery. A thoracoscope is inserted from about 2cm of incision on the patient’s chest and transmits images of the inside of the chest onto a video monitor. Thoracoscopic surgery has the advantage of small incisions and little postoperative pain compared with the conventional procedures. It enables the patients to recover quickly and discharge soon as well.

2. We provide personalized treatment (tailor-made medicine) appropriate to each patient's type of lung cancer with reliable preoperative diagnoses in collaboration with the pathologist.

With regard to cancer, the cause of the occurrence and progress after treatments are totally different from each patient. Even under the same treatment, it is not unusual that each patient has different reactions such as agreement/disagreement with the treatment or little/severe side effects. Correspondingly, personalized treatments (tailor-made medicine) are required and we proactively perform it.
Originally, lung cancer was classified into two big categories; small-cell lung cancer and non-small-cell lung cancer. Molecular biology on lung cancer is advanced recently. As a result, it was revealed that EGFR mutation and EML4-ALK fusion gene are related to lung cancer occurrence, and we became able to analyze more precisely the type of each lung cancer. Close corroboration with the pathological department is essential to make diagnoses of such type of lung cancer. The pathological department conducts detailed examination of cancer cells taken from a patient and we discuss an optimal treatment individually based on the result.

3. As a community-based university hospital, we support lung cancer patients for a long time. In the unlikely event of recurrence or metastasis, respond promptly and appropriately.

We focus on “community-based health care service” as well as personalized treatment (tailor-made medicine) of cancer.
In various types of cancer, lung cancer, in particular, has higher risk of recurrence and tends to metastasize easily. We aim to provide all of our patients with fairly radical treatments, however, lung cancer is a disease that there is a possibility of sudden recurrence or metastasis after a few years no matter how well things go after treatment.
To respond immediately and appropriately to such cases, we keep our patients’ medical records over a long period of time. We can get your medical history from our medical records, so you don’t need to explain about that from the beginning. We believe that you can visit us again without concerns no matter how much time has passed since the last visit.
We may ask patients to visit our outpatient clinic for chemotherapy, radiotherapy or rehabilitation depending on your condition even after you were discharged subsequent to the surgery of lung cancer. The treatment for lung cancer basically is not completed all at once, but it takes long period of time to cure it. That is why we pursue to provide medical care rooted in our community keeping smooth cooperative structure with other medical facilities in our region as a department of a community-based hospital.
Local hospitals can bring a lot of benefits as follows to patients.
  • Even geriatric patients with weaken legs or problems in respiratory function or heart can come to see their doctors without any stress.
  • When the patients are hospitalized, their family or partners can visit them easily.
In other words, visiting a hospital far from home may put physical and financial strain on the patients. We strongly recommend that you choose a hospital considering such factors especially for the treatments of lung cancer in need of long period of time to be cured.

4. Everything is "for our patients". To provide more advanced medical care to patients, we will strive to research new treatment methods and techniques, aiming to be world-class thoracic surgeons.

With this resolution, Prof. Akira Iyoda, the chair of our department, is enthusiastically engaged in education for surgeons and research in the field of thoracic surgery. With regard to education for surgeons, he believes that it is important to start to improve surgical skill while they are still young. He helps the staff gain clinical experience and acquire surgical techniques, and holds his own “Wet lab”, which is a surgical training program for residents.
As for research, we have “Research meeting” in our department every week and share the progress of research. We are committed to disseminate new evidences to the world and proactively submit papers in English to international medical journals.
We are making efforts to improve our techniques and research new treatments. It is all because we eager to help our patients. We endeavor to keep the QOL of as many patients as possible at a high level with advanced technologies and new treatments provided by us.
Furthermore, regarding our inpatients, not only their attending doctors but also any other staff grasp the patients’ condition and the treatment plans. We are thorough on making a round of visits after holding a meeting together and achieving a consensus every morning. In doing so, staff can always dedicate to their duty with a sense of tension and it leads to avoiding simple mistakes. We just do the things that are obvious as a medical department, however, we always keep “All for our patients” in mind and try to do conscientiously our duties one by one.
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