Role of surgical resection in broncholithiasis

Konstantinos Potaris, Daniel L. Miller, Victor F. Trastek, Claude Deschamps, Mark S. Allen, Peter C. Pairolero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Background Broncholithasis is an uncommon problem with life-threatening complications. The purpose of this study was to update our experience in patients with broncholithiasis managed by surgical intervention. Methods. From January 1984 to January 1998, 118 patients were diagnosed with broncholithiasis at our institution. We reviewed the medical records of those patients who underwent surgical treatment. Results. There were 47 patients (19 men and 28 women). Median age was 58 years (range, 18 to 90 years). Indications for operation were symptoms in 44 patients and abnormal roentgenograms in 3 patients. Operative procedures included lung resection in 30 patients, broncholithectomy with or without bronchoplasty in 16, and segmental bronchial resection in 1 patient. There were no operative deaths. Postoperative complications occurred in 16 patients (34%). Follow-up was complete in 46 patients (98%) and ranged from 11 to 165 months (median, 74 months). The 15-year actuarial survival did not differ significantly from that of a matched control group (p = 0.774). At follow-up, 28 patients (68.3%) were asymptomatic. Symptoms continued in 12 patients. Recurrent or persistent disease was documented in 6 patients (14.6%). The site of recurrence was in a new location in 3 patients, a previous site in 2, and unknown in 1 patient. Subsequent management included observation in 3 patients, bronchoscopic removal in 2, and bilobectomy in 1 patient. Conclusions. Surgical resection for broncholithiasis is an effective method of management for this disease and can be done with low mortality and morbidity. Progression of the disease may lead to recurrence and further surgical intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)248-251
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 2000
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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