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Thoracoscopy

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

Thoracoscopy is a procedure to look inside your chest cavity with an endoscope. An endoscope is a narrow bendable tube that has a light and camera on the end. The endoscope is inserted into your chest through small incisions in the chest wall. Thoracoscopy may be done to diagnose or treat conditions of the lungs and pleura (thin lining covering the lungs).

DISCHARGE INSTRUCTIONS:

Call, or have someone call, your local emergency number (911 in the US) if:

  • You are short of breath or feel like you cannot get enough air.
  • You feel lightheaded and have chest pain.
  • You cough up blood.
  • You feel dizzy or faint and pass out.

Seek care immediately if:

  • Your arm or leg feels warm, tender, and painful. It may look swollen and red.
  • Blood soaks through your bandage.
  • Your incision is swollen, red, or has pus coming from it.
  • Your stitches come apart.

Call your surgeon if:

  • You have nausea or are vomiting.
  • You cough up yellow, green, or bloody mucus.
  • You have a fever or chills.
  • You have constipation or diarrhea.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Medicines:

You may need any of the following:

  • Prescription pain medicine may be given. Ask your healthcare provider how to take this medicine safely. Some prescription pain medicines contain acetaminophen. Do not take other medicines that contain acetaminophen without talking to your healthcare provider. Too much acetaminophen may cause liver damage. Prescription pain medicine may cause constipation. Ask your healthcare provider how to prevent or treat constipation.
  • Antibiotics help prevent a bacterial infection.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him or her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Care for your wound as directed:

Follow your surgeon's instructions about how to care for your wounds at home. Gently wash the part of your body that has the stitches or staples. Do not rub on the surgery area to dry your skin. Pat the area gently with a towel. When the area is dry, put on a clean, new bandage as directed.

Follow up with your surgeon as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

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The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.