Lung Volume Reduction Surgery (LVRS)
The pressure from the distended areas of the lung compresses the nearby healthy lung tissue. This makes it difficult to exchange oxygen and carbon dioxide when exhaling.
Lung volume reduction surgery involves eliminating up to 30 percent of the lung’s total volume. This reduces the pressure caused by the distended areas of the lung, allowing the healthy parts of the lung to function better.
Surgeons at the University of Wisconsin have performed between 50 and 100 LVRS procedures over the past 10 years, with good to excellent results in 80 to 85 percent of patients.
While LVRS does not cure emphysema, it can, for a very specific group of emphysema patients, improve quality of life and provide an alternative to lung transplantation.