Thoracic Surgery

The surgeons at OU Medicine are proud to represent the largest thoracic surgical practice in the state. Backed by the research and clinical trials that drive tomorrow’s breakthroughs, our team is a powerful force in changing the outlook for those with thoracic diseases and conditions. The varied expertise of our thoracic team and our passion for driving medical innovations enables us to offer procedures here that are not available anywhere else in the region.

We provide innovative surgical procedures on all organs in the chest, including heart, lungs and esophagus.

For patients with cancer, trauma or pulmonary disease in the lungs, a variety of thoracic surgeries are available, including minimally invasive and traditional open methods.

Thoracic Surgical Oncology

For patients with cancer, trauma or pulmonary disease in the lungs, a variety of thoracic surgeries are available, including minimally invasive and traditional open methods.

Esophageal Surgery

Surgery to remove tumors in the esophagus is called an esophagectomy and often involves removing a small part of the stomach as well. The upper part of the esophagus and remaining part of the stomach are then connected, with part of the stomach pulled up into the chest or neck to function as the new esophagus. Depending on your condition, an esophagectomy can be performed using either open or minimally invasive techniques.

Lung Cancer Surgery

There are several different types of surgical procedures, referred to as thoracotomy, to remove cancers of the lung. Depending on your condition, your surgeon may choose to use a robot-assisted technique. If a traditional open surgery is more appropriate, you may undergo one of the following: pleurectomy, which removes the lining of the chest cavity; pneumonectomy, which removes the entire lung and the lymph nodes; lobectomy, which removes the lobe of the cancerous lung along with the lymph nodes; anatomical segmental resection, which removes the tumor, blood vessels and a section of the lung; or a wedge resection, which removes the tumor and surrounding tissue. Our surgeons are experts at video-assisted thoracoscopic (VATS lobectomies), This is a less invasive procedure for treating early stage lung cancer, especially for smaller tumors near the outside of the lung. 

Chest Wall Surgery

Patients who suffer from chest wall disorders due to congenital conditions or who have experienced trauma may require chest wall surgery to repair or reconstruct damaged areas. A chest wall resection is performed to remove tissue, cartilage and parts of the sternum or ribs as part of the process of removing a chest wall tumor. Chest wall reconstruction is used to rebuild this area with prosthetic materials. Reconstruction procedures are also performed on trauma patients who have experienced damage to the ribs.


Patient Information

Our thoracic surgeons provide care at the following location:

Stephenson Cancer Center
Multidisciplinary Clinic
800 NE 10th Street, Suite 4500
Oklahoma City, OK 73104

Preparing for Surgery

As with most medical procedures, preparation in advance of your cardiac, thoracic or vascular surgery can help ease anxiety as well as make for a smoother recovery and experience overall.

  • The night before your surgery, organize clothing and any supplies you want to take with you.

  • Have a designated person as your primary contact and provide their information to your care team before surgery.

  • Be sure to eat a healthy diet prior to surgery to help give your body the nutrients it needs to recover well. However, do not eat or drink past midnight the night before surgery.

  • Be aware of your health leading up to surgery. If you develop a fever or cold prior to surgery, contact your doctor a soon as possible for an evaluation.