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The Pediatric Forum
February 2010

Video-Assisted Thorascopic Surgery vs Chest Drain With Fibrinolytics for the Treatment of Pleural Empyema in Children: A Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials

Author Affiliations

Copyright 2010 American Medical Association. All Rights Reserved. Applicable FARS/DFARS Restrictions Apply to Government Use.2010

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2010;164(2):201-203. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2009.271

There is marked variability in treatment of pleural empyema in children1,2 and a debate over whether video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) is more effective than chest drain with fibrinolytics. A meta-analysis of observational studies and subsequent large observational studies concluded that surgical management, in particular VATS, is most effective.1-3 We conducted a systematic review of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to compare the effectiveness of these treatments for pleural empyema in children.