Thoracic Surgery

Thoracic Surgery

Location: 1° floor Policlinico (ward)

Chief of the Unit: Prof. Federico Rea


Head office: Sig. Sergio De Iacovo, 0498212237

Healthcare office: Sig.ra Pajaro Maria Bertilla, 0498212242,



Type of healthcare activity:

The Unit of Thoracic Surgery provides care to adult patients affected by primary and metastatic lung malignancies, benign lung diseases, pleural pathology, pathology of the mediastinum, trachea and bronchi. Moreover, in collaboration with the Unit of Anesthesia and Intensive Care, the Unit of Respiratory Pathophysiology and the Respiratory Diseases Unit, an important part of the healthcare activity is dedicated to lung transplantation surgery as a treatment for end-stage lung diseases.

Main technologies/surgical approaches:

The Unit of Thoracic Surgery adopts innovative surgical approaches, such as video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) or robot-assisted surgery (RATS). Thanks to cutting-edge technologies, such as advanced energy devices for coagulation and hemostasis, automatic mechanical staplers and 3D telescopes, lung cancer surgery and surgery of the mediastinum can be safely accomplished minimally invasively; leading to a reduced rate of complications and an earlier functional recovery. Minimally invasive approaches are adopted with increasing frequency also for resection of locally advanced cancers, requiring bronchoplastic or vascular reconstructive procedures.

In the field of lung transplantation, our Unit is at the forefront of ex-vivo lung perfusion techniques for donor lung preservation, and consistently adopts extracorporeal membrane oxygenation technology for reducing ischemia-reperfusion injury after transplantation.



Pathologies of interest:

The main research lines of the Unit of Thoracic Surgery include: COPD and lung cancer, surgery of the trachea, bronchi, and tracheosophageal fistula; pathology of the thymus and robotic surgery; lung transplantation and ex-vivo lung perfusion techniques; surgery of locally-advanced lung cancer; multimodal treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma.


Clinical research activity is conducted both with retrospective and prospective studies, and with randomized clinical trials, in a multidisciplinary environment that includes Oncologists, Radiotherapists, Pulmonologists, Anesthesiologists, Pathologists and Immunologists. Data analysis is often conducted in collaboration with specialized biostatisticians. The Unit of Thoracic Surgery is also involved in projects of basic science and translational research, which employs preclinical models for the study of main pathologic conditions affecting the lung and other intrathoracic organs.

Main international collaborations:

-        Strasbourg University Hospital

-        Hôpitaux Universitaires Paris Centre-Site Cochin

-        Leuven University Hospital



-        School of Specialization in Thoracic Surgery

-        PhD School in Thoracic and Pulmonary sciences