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Case Reports in Emergency Medicine
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 454970, 4 pages
Case Report

Video-Assisted Minithoracotomy for Pulmonary Laceration with a Massive Hemothorax

Department of Thoracic Surgery, Akita Red Cross Hospital, 222-1 Kamikitate, Akita City, Akita 010-1495, Japan

Received 9 January 2014; Accepted 5 March 2014; Published 13 March 2014

Academic Editors: L. Bojić, J. D. Lin, and W. Mauritz

Copyright © 2014 Hideki Ota et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Severe intrathoracic hemorrhage from pulmonary parenchyma is the most serious complication of pulmonary laceration after blunt trauma requiring immediate surgical hemostasis through open thoracotomy. The safety and efficacy of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) techniques for this life-threatening condition have not been fully evaluated yet. We report a case of pulmonary laceration with a massive hemothorax after blunt trauma successfully treated using a combination of muscle-sparing minithoracotomy with VATS techniques (video-assisted minithoracotomy). A 22-year-old man was transferred to our department after a falling accident. A diagnosis of right-sided pneumothorax was made on physical examination and urgent chest decompression was performed with a tube thoracostomy. Chest computed tomographic scan revealed pulmonary laceration with hematoma in the right lung. The pulmonary hematoma extending along segmental pulmonary artery in the helium of the middle lobe ruptured suddenly into the thoracic cavity, resulting in hemorrhagic shock on the fourth day after admission. Emergency right middle lobectomy was performed through video-assisted minithoracotomy. We used two cotton dissectors as a chopstick for achieving compression hemostasis during surgery. The patient recovered satisfactorily. Video-assisted minithoracotomy can be an alternative approach for the treatment of pulmonary lacerations with a massive hemothorax in hemodynamically unstable patients.