Chest Surgery

 – It’s Not as Intimidating as You Might Think

Chest SurgeryChest surgery (a.k.a. thoracic surgery) was once a very invasive procedure, often requiring lengthy hospital stays and a longer recovery time. Our lung surgeons use the latest technologies to ensure your procedure is less invasive than typical lung surgeries of the past. Surgical Specialists of Ocala performs two types of lung surgeries: Thoracoscopy and Thoracotomy.  Let’s take a closer look at each.


Thoracoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure primarily used to learn more about what is happening inside of your lungs and help determine the best course of treatment.  This type of lung surgery involves making small incisions and inserting a thoracoscope (camera) to explore the inside of the chest cavity.  The thoracoscope allows the surgeon to obtain a better view of the inside of your lungs to help diagnose various lung problems, including lung cancer.  If necessary, a biopsy of a mass or portions of the lung can be obtained during this procedure.


A Thoracotomy is an open chest surgery.  The incision used in this procedure is somewhat larger than the one used during a Thoracoscopy.  A Thoracotomy allows the surgeon to directly view and examine the lungs.  The lung being examined is deflated, while a breathing tube helps the other lung take in air. During this time, various procedures may be performed, including biopsies, mass removals, resection of all or part of the lung, and even lymph node removal if deemed necessary. If your surgeon finds a mass, the location and size can be measured.  Your surgeon will then conduct further examination to see if the mass has spread.  Depending on the findings, either a biopsy of the mass will be performed, or the mass (along with surrounding tissue) will be completely removed.

Depending on your current health and depth of the procedure, you can expect a hospital stay after a Thoracoscopy and a hospital stay after a Thoracotomy.  You will then be given instructions to complete your recovery at home. Your follow-up appointments will take place with your surgeon at our Ocala office.

Have a question about our lung surgery procedures?  Feel free to “Ask the Doctor” or schedule an appointment today.


Diagnose and Treat Pleural Effusion

Diagnose and Treat Pleural EffusionSurgical Specialist of Ocala can diagnose and treat pleural effusion. Once diagnosed, we investigate to find the underlying cause, then determine the best course of treatment. Let’s take a look at some of the most common treatment options.


Medication may be recommended to reduce the accumulation of fluid. For instance, when pleural effusion is a result of congestive heart failure, diuretics may be prescribed. Your surgeon will discuss all applicable medication options with you.

Lung Tissue Removal

If restricting tissue around the lung is causing pleural effusion, your surgeon may recommend removing this tissue.

Drainage Tube

A temporary drainage tube can be inserted through a minimally invasive surgical procedure called Video-Assisted Thoracic Surgery (VATS).

Do you have any symptoms of pleural effusion? Do you have any of the underlying conditions listed above? Have you already been diagnosed with pleural effusion? If so, we can help. Call today to schedule an appointment with one of our specialists.

RELATED ARTICLEPainful Breathing? Chest Pain? It Could Be Pleural Effusion


Learn more about Thoracic Surgery in Ocala.

Painful Breathing? Chest Pain? It Could Be Pleural Effusion

Painful Breathing? Chest Pain? It Could Be Pleural EffusionPleural effusion (commonly known as “water on the lungs”) is a result of an increase in the fluid between the two membranes that cover the lungs, separating them from the chest wall.  These membranes, called visceral and parietal pleurae, naturally have a small quantity of fluid spread over them.  However, when too much fluid exists, plural effusion occurs.

Plural effusion is generally found during a physical exam, on a chest X-Ray or during a chest ultrasound as it often presents with little or no symptoms. Patients who have symptoms report chest pain and/or painful breathing. Occasionally, a fever or cough may also be present. A number of conditions can cause pleural effusion, including:

  • Hypoalbuminemia (low levels of albumin in the blood)
  • Kidney disease
  • Infections
  • Heart failure
  • Malignant cancers
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Cirrhosis
  • Pneumonia
  • Inflammatory disease
  • Autoimmune diseases

CONTINUE READINGDiagnose and Treat Pleural Effusion

Learn more about Thoracic Surgery in Ocala.