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Mechanical ventilation for acute postoperative respiratory failure after surgery for bronchial carcinoma.
  1. C J Hirschler-Schulte,
  2. B S Hylkema,
  3. R W Meyer


    From 1978 to 1982 365 patients were treated surgically for bronchial carcinoma. Lobectomy was performed in 250 and pneumonectomy in 115. Sixteen (4.4%) needed mechanical ventilation for acute respiratory failure. Six out of eight with a lobectomy, but only two out of eight with a pneumonectomy, survived initially. Of these eight survivors, five died from recurrent malignancy within a year but three were alive and well at two years. The complications leading to acute respiratory failure were unpredictable in most patients. Improving techniques of mechanical ventilation and intensive care may lead to better results in the future.

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