Thoracoscopy vs thoracotomy for the management of metastatic osteosarcoma: A Pediatric Surgical Oncology Research Collaborative Study

Timothy B. Lautz, Zishaan Farooqui, Todd Jenkins, Todd E. Heaton, John J. Doski, Jo Cooke-Barber, Andrew J. Murphy, Andrew M. Davidoff, Sara A. Mansfield, Eugene S. Kim, Samuel Zuber, Catherine Goodhue, Sanjeev A. Vasudevan, Michael P. LaQuaglia, Nelson Piche, Annie Le-Nguyen, Jennifer H. Aldrink, Marcus M. Malek, Vei Shaun Siow, Richard D. GlickBarrie S. Rich, Rebecka L. Meyers, Scott S. Short, Andreana Butter, Reto M. Baertschiger, Elizabeth A. Fialkowski, Roshni Dasgupta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Complete surgical resection of pulmonary metastatic disease in patients with osteosarcoma is crucial to long-term survival. Open thoracotomy allows palpation of nodules not identified on imaging but the impact on survival is unknown. The objective of this study was to compare overall survival (OS) and pulmonary disease-free survival (DFS) in children who underwent thoracotomy vs thoracoscopic surgery for pulmonary metastasectomy. A multi-institutional collaborative group retrospectively reviewed 202 pediatric patients with osteosarcoma who underwent pulmonary metastasectomy by thoracotomy (n = 154) or thoracoscopy (n = 48). Results were analyzed by Kaplan-Meier survival estimates and multivariate Cox proportional hazard regression models. With median follow-up of 45 months, 135 (67.5%) patients had a pulmonary relapse and 95 (47%) patients were deceased. Kaplan-Meier analysis showed no significant difference in 5-year pulmonary DFS (25% vs 38%; P =.18) or OS (49% vs 42%, P =.37) between the surgical approaches of thoracotomy and thoracoscopy. In Cox regression analysis controlling for other factors impacting outcome, there was a significantly increased risk of mortality (HR 2.11; P =.027; 95% CI 1.09-4.09) but not pulmonary recurrence (HR 0.96; P =.90; 95% CI 0.52-1.79) with a thoracoscopic approach. However, in the subset analysis limited to patients with oligometastatic disease, thoracoscopy had no increased risk of mortality (HR 1.16; P =.62; 0.64-2.11). In conclusion, patients with metastatic osteosarcoma and limited pulmonary disease burden demonstrate comparable outcomes after thoracotomy and thoracoscopy for metastasectomy. While significant selection bias in these surgical cohorts limits the generalizability of the conclusions, clinical equipoise for a randomized clinical trial in patients with oligometastatic disease is supported.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1164-1171
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Cancer
Issue number5
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021


  • child
  • disease-free survival
  • metastasectomy
  • osteosarcoma
  • thoracotomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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