Lung Cancer - Segmentectomy

A wedge resection is a surgical procedure that is done to remove a wedge-shaped section of lung tissue, usually for treating lung cancer, but sometimes for other indications. A wedge resection is less invasive than some of the other surgical options used to remove lung cancer, and it may be appropriate if your cancer is relatively contained. Your healthcare provider may recommend wedge resection surgery to treat your lung cancer, especially if you have been diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

What is a segmentectomy?

A segmentectomy (resection of part of the lung) is usually effective in treating early stage lung cancer. This procedure is less invasive than a lobectomy and involves removing only the tumor with a small amount of healthy tissue around it.

In some cases, this procedure can be used to treat non-cancerous conditions, and is most often offered for early-stage (and therefore small) non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). 

Similar procedures

Segmentectomy is different from other types of lung cancer surgery, including:

  • Pneumonectomy: removal of the entire lung;
  • Lobectomy: removal of a lobe of the lung;
  • Wedge resection: only the diseased portion is removed. This procedure is not sufficient for a primary lung tumor but can be done for metastases or non-tumor pathologies (bulla, emphysema...).

Your surgeon will suggest a segmentectomy rather than another procedure for several reasons:

  • Faster recovery;
  • More preserved lung function;
  • Depending on your health status.

When possible, this procedure is usually performed and has the same success rate as lobectomy. 

Day of surgery: what to expect?

The segmentectomy is performed in the operating room under general anesthesia. The anesthesiologist may offer you local analgesia in addition to the general anesthesia to prevent and reduce post-operative pain.

During your general anesthesia, you will be placed under respiratory assistance through a tube in the throat (intubation). You will be given intravenous antibiotics before or during the procedure. The anesthesiologist will monitor all of your vital signs throughout the procedure.

A lung resection can be performed in two ways:

Thoracotomy (open surgery)

A portion of a lobe of the lungs is removed through a long incision in the side of the chest (thoracotomy). This involves moving the ribs apart to gain access to the lungs. This type of surgery is usually done when the tumor is difficult to access. 

Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS)

A portion of a lobe of the lung is removed through a few small incisions in the chest using instruments and a camera. A VATS segmentectomy may be considered if the tumor is easily accessible to the surgeon. 

VATS is a less invasive procedure than thoracotomy, but it is not always possible to use this procedure if the tumor is in a difficult to reach location.

How to Prepare ?

When your surgeon explains in detail how your surgery will be performed and what the possible complications are, ask any questions you may have about the procedure, preparation and recovery.

You will need to undergo a series of pre-operative assessments prior to surgery. These may include:

  • A careful history (medical and surgical history, allergies, etc.);
  • A physical examination;
  • Blood tests;
  • Functional respiratory examinations (EFR);
  • Imaging examinations to evaluate the exact location of the tumor and to verify the absence of metastases;
  • Respiratory kinesitherapy sessions may be prescribed if necessary;
  • Depending on your state of health, your anesthesiologist may also refer you to a cardiologist.
Important: Your anesthesiologist will carefully review all of your medications during your preoperative visit and may recommend that you stop some of them before the procedure.

It is essential to inform your anesthesiologist of all your medications. Some of them may increase the bleeding time and must be stopped well before the operation.

Smoking cessation

If you smoke, your doctor will recommend that you quit as soon as possible. Quitting smoking before surgery reduces the risk of complications, improves healing and increases the chances of a successful surgery. Reducing surgical risks is just one of the benefits of quitting smoking after a cancer diagnosis.

Potential Risks

Segmentectomy can be very effective for early stage lung cancer, but when tumors are larger than 3 cm or if they are located in a section of the lung that cannot be easily removed, this type of surgery is not considered the best option.

In this case, your surgeon may recommend another type of lung surgery or non-surgical treatments such as chemotherapy or radiation therapy.

Serious complications are fairly rare after a segmentectomy. When they do occur, they may include:

  • A pleural breach, requiring a chest tube to be left in place for several days. This is the most frequent complication;
  • Infections, such as pneumonia or scar infection;
  • Bleeding: the search for and correction of anemia before the operation are essential to limit the consequences of a possible bleeding;
  • Heart problems: fortunately rare. If there is any doubt, your doctor will suggest a cardiological check-up before the operation to limit this risk as much as possible.

After the intervention

After the intervention, you will stay in the recovery room for about two hours. You will then be monitored in the intensive care unit for one or two days before returning to a regular hospital room.

A kinesiologist will work with you, asking you to take deep breaths and breathe into an incentive spirometer. Nurses will help you get up and move around as soon as you are able.

Unless there are complications, most people stay in the hospital for 3 to 5 days.

When you are discharged, your surgeon will give you specific instructions for follow-up and a prescription for medication to relieve any pain when you return home.

You may be prescribed pulmonary rehabilitation after lung cancer surgery.


Surgery scheduled soon?
Evaluate your risk now.

Our mission is to provide safe & affordable perioperative care
for every patient having surgery using AI technology and telehealth.


A successful surgery starts
with a good preparation

After scheduling surgery, complete our online pre-surgery assessment to learn if you are ready for surgery, or if you need more preparation.


Answer a set of questions to help us measure your readiness

After scheduling surgery, complete our online pre-surgery assessment to learn if you are ready for surgery, or if you need more preparation.


Connect with our team of medical experts.

Access our team of pre-surgery expert clinicians by booking your appointment for a video visit.


Receive comprehensive care.

Within minutes, you'll speak with a surgery and anesthesia expert. You'll receive a full virtual evaluation, prescriptions (when needed) and pre-surgery care plan.

We provide your surgical team with a detailed preoperative clearance letter for your upcoming surgery.


A superdoctor on your phone. Get 24/7 access to Hoopcare.

Stay connected in the HoopCare app with our online chat, surgical planner, and pre-surgery educational content.


Refunded if we can't clear you on time or if your are not satisfied. FSA/HSA eligible.

📍Only available in NY, CA, FL and TX.

Choose a plan that's right for you.

Surgical Clearance
Standard 5 days
Our price excludes any ancillary services but are usually covered by healthcare plans.
without insurance
with insurance
What's included:
Certified clearance letter
Average 5 days delivery
Prescription for labs at Quest
Coordinate cardiac clearance
Unlimited 24/7 messaging
Basic physical examination
Telehealth visit for full review
Surgical Clearance
Priority 24h
Our price excludes any ancillary services but are usually covered by healthcare plans.
without insurance
with insurance
What's included:
Certified clearance letter
Average 24 hours delivery
Prescription for labs at Quest
Coordinate cardiac clearance
Unlimited 24/7 messaging
Basic physical examination
Telehealth visit for full review
Chat with us.
Learn more about how Hoopcare and how we can help you with your upcoming surgery.
123 reviews
4.8 rate
check our
Google Reviews
Chat with us 💬
Typical reply time: 5 minutes
Need an advanced physical examination?
We'll send you a surgery box to replicate the quality of an in-person visit from home.
Receive a surgical box for advanced physical examination if required by your surgeon.
Surgery box with at-home EKG, stethoscope, blood pressure monitor
Express shipping, label and return box included
+ $250

*All medical equipment is loaned and a free return shipping label is provided (full price $1399). Our price excludes any ancillary services (e.g., labs, medical equipment, cost of medication) but are usually covered by healthcare plans.

Presenting our innovative Health Monitoring Surgery Box, your comprehensive health management solution, now with added benefits. This all-in-one kit is designed to provide you with the tools you need to monitor your health accurately and conveniently, and it now offers even more.

Our Health Monitoring Surgery Box is not just a product, but a commitment to your optimal evaluation and monitoring. Stay informed, stay healthy, and take a proactive approach to your surgery with our Health Monitoring Surgery Box.


Hospital ∙ ASC ∙ Employer ∙ Insurance
Our telehealth clinical team optimize and clear patients for surgery for you.
Streamline your surgical flow and avoid costly complications, delay and cancellation

Give the best to your patients and streamline your pre-surgery process.


Do you have questions or need a medical clearance for your surgery?

We are here for you.

Experience peace of mind and get access to expert surgical and anesthesia clinicians selected for you. Meet your new partner for your surgery journey —providing you with 24/7 mobile access to medical care and expertise.