The Thoracic Surgery Division at the University of Maryland Medical Center is nationally recognized for developing innovative treatments for disorders of the structures and organs of the chest, particularly the lungs and esophagus.
The Division of Thoracic Surgery also works to improve quality of life for people with emphysema through its Emphysema Program, which began in 1994. More than 700 patients have been evaluated here and treated through a rehabilitation program or lung volume reduction surgery.
In addition, UMMC has received national recognition for its results with this surgery. In 1997, it was selected by the National Institutes of Health to participate in a large-scale clinical trial that compared surgical versus nonsurgical treatment for emphysema (MD-NETT Trial).
The results of this study were published in the May 22, 2003 edition of the New England Journal of Medicine. These results indicated that, on average, patients who underwent LVRS with medical therapy were more likely to function better after two years and did not face an increased risk of death compared to those who receive only medical therapy.
We also offer surgical management for a variety of conditions that affect the lungs and thoracic cavity, including lung and esophageal cancer. We strive to use minimally invasive approaches whenever possible and were one of the first programs in the United States to develop and use video-assisted thoracoscopy, which allows surgeons to complete procedures through small incisions, usually made between the ribs. The recovery period is much shorter and the risk for complications is much lower than with standard open thoracic surgical procedures.