Staple-line reinforcement with a new type of polyglycolic acid felt

Masafumi Kawamura, Ken Ichi Kase, Makoto Sawafuji, Masazumi Watanabe, Hirohisa Horinouchi, Koichi Kobayashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Citations (Scopus)


Although various materials have been used for reinforcement in lung-volume-reduction surgery to buttress pulmonary staple-line, absorbable materials are not available for use in thoracoscopic surgery. Moreover, even nonabsorbable types of reinforcements have been used only for lung volume reduction surgery. However, elderly patients with spontaneous pneumothorax secondary to emphysematous lung are well treated with staple-line reinforcement. The authors developed a new type of polyglycolic acid felt to buttress staple-line. This felt is absorbable, easier to cut with a stapler knife than is the conventional polyglycolic acid felt, and inexpensive enough to use for various types of thoracic surgeries for emphysematous lungs in Japan, and it can be attached to staplers with a small amount of fibrin glue. These strips were used to reinforce pulmonary staple lines for resection of emphysematous lungs in 14 patients: pulmonary emphysema (n = 1), bilateral giant bullae (n = 1), ipsilateral giant bullae (n = 6), spontaneous pneumothorax with multiple bullae in an emphysematous lung (n = 5), and lung cancer in a patient with pulmonary emphysema (n = 1). There were no air leaks during surgery. Air leaks were noted in three patients after surgery. In two patients, the air leaks stopped within 2 weeks. In one patient, the air leak was found to originate from an untouched lobe during reoperation. No infection or allergic reaction developed in a patient during a mean follow-up of 12 months (range, 1 to 24 months).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-46
Number of pages4
JournalSurgical Laparoscopy, Endoscopy and Percutaneous Techniques
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • Felt
  • Polyglycolic acid
  • Pulmonary resection
  • Reinforcement
  • Stapler

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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