ISSN 2398-2969      

Thoracoscopy

Clapis

Synonym(s): Thoracic endoscopy


Introduction

  • Thoracoscopy procedures in rabbits are still within their infancy and only a few procedures of this kind have been performed.
  • Some authors consider thoracoscopy to be easier than laparoscopy because there are fewer organs and because it is easier to deal with a pneumothorax than a pneumoperitoneum.

Uses

  • Evaluation and biopsy of an intrathoracic mass where an ultrasound-guided fine needle aspirate has been inconclusive. It can be used for both mediastinal and lung masses.
  • Collection of fluid for cytology and culture.
  • In dogs and cats a partial pericardiectomy to relieve pericardial effusion is commonly performed using thoracoscopy.

Advantages

  • Biopsy samples can be obtained for histopathology and culture to maximize the chance of achieving a definitive diagnosis, as cytology from an ultrasound-guided fine needle aspirate can yield inconclusive results in a number of cases.
  • Minimally invasive compared to a thoracotomy Thorax: thoracotomy:
    • Thoracotomy is associated with high mortality rates in rabbits.
    • As radiotherapy is now the therapy of choice for thymoma, sometimes thoracotomy is justified based on the fact that it provides also a diagnosis.
    • Thoracoscopy may be more preferable to obtain that diagnosis, phasing out the use of thoracotomy and improving survival rates of rabbits.
  • Presumed less painful and faster post-operative recovery time.

Disadvantages

  • Equipment relatively expensive.
  • Needs specialized training.
  • Small thoracic cavity of a rabbit.

Requirements

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Preparation

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Procedure

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Aftercare

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Outcomes

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Prognosis

  • Dependent on underlying cause.

Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Divers S J (2015) Making the difference in exotic animal practice. The value of endoscopy. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Pract 18, 351-357 PubMed.
  • Guedes R L et al (2014) Cervical and transdiaphragmatic paraxiphoid thoracoscopy in dogs: evaluation of respiratory response and blood pressure. Cienc. Rural, Santa Maria 44 (7), 1277-1283.
  • Divers S J (2010) Endoscopic equipment and instrumentation for use in exotic animal veterinary medicine. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Pract 13 (2), 171-185 PubMed.
  • Divers S J (2010) Exotic mammal diagnostic endoscopy and endosurgery. Vet Clin North Am Exot Anim Pract 13 (2), 255-272 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Divers S J & Sladakovic I (2021) Exotic Mammal Diagnostic and Surgical Endoscopy. In: Ferrets, Rabbits and Rodents. Clinical Medicine and Surgery. 4th edn. Elsevier, USA. pp 498-513.
  • Melillo A (2013) Endoscopy. In: BSAVA Manual of Rabbit Surgery, Dentistry and Imaging. Eds: Harcourt-Brown F & Chitty J. BSAVA, UK. pp 115-122.
  • Hernandez-Divers S J (2006) Endoscopic Surgery in Small Mammals: the Future is Already Here. In: Proc of The North American Veterinary Conference. USA. pp 1714-1718.
  • Monnet E (2005) Surgical Approaches to the Thoracic Cavity. In: Proc of World Small Animal Veterinary Association World Congress. Website: www.vin.com

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