Dr. Tadasu Kohno: beware of the complications in VATS
Meet the Professor

Dr. Tadasu Kohno: beware of the complications in VATS

Submitted Apr 30, 2018. Accepted for publication May 11, 2018.

doi: 10.21037/jtd.2018.05.111

Editor’s note

The 2018 Asia Thoracic Cancer Care Summit (ATCCS) was held in Hong Kong from April 13–14, 2018. Many thoracic surgeons from around the world gathered at the Sheraton Hong Kong Hotel to share their views on the future cooperation and innovation in the management of chest and lung cancer through lectures, discussions and seminars. During the meeting, AME was honored to have invited Dr. Tadasu Kohno from Toranomon Hospital in Tokyo, Japan to have an interview with us.

Expert introduction

Tadasu Kohno (Figure 1), MD, PhD, is currently the director of the Department of Thoracic Surgery, Respiratory Center, Toranomon Hospital and the councilor of Japan Endoscopic Surgery Association. He was a member of Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Endoscopic and Laparoscopic Surgeons of Asia, The Japanese Association for Thoracic Surgery. Dr. Tadasu Kohno is dedicated to improving the treatment of thoracic surgical diseases and specializing in actual practice of thoracoscopic surgery and thoracoscopic surgery skill up series.

Figure 1 Dr. Tadasu Kohno was making a speech on managing the complications of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) at Asia Thoracic Cancer Care Summit (ATCCS) 2018.

Dr. Tadasu Kohno graduated from Tohoku University, School of Medicine in 1982. He was a fellow at the Department of Surgery University of California, Irvine School of Medicine. In 1990, he went to the Department of Thoracic Surgery at the University of Tokyo in 1992 and received a doctorate in medicine in 1996. He has served as the Department of Thoracic Surgery, Respiratory Center, Toranomon Hospital since January 2004. Dr. Tadasu Kohno has published several books on thoracoscopic surgery and actively participates in international conferences in the field of chest cancer. He collaborates with well-known specialists in the field of thoracic surgery and contributes much to the development of thoracic surgery.

JTD: You had a very excellent speech today on the topic “Managing Complications in VATS”. Would you briefly introduce us to this research?

Dr. Kohno: Our hospital lays great emphasis on teaching. While young surgeons are taught to perform video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS), we constantly meets with a range of complications that we have to fix. This is why I would like to specially talk about the management of complications today and arouse awareness towards it.

JTD: What do you think are the most intractable complications in VATS, and what areas should we focus more on while managing them?

Dr. Kohno: I think the most intractable complication is bleeding from the primary artery. We have to comprehend how this complication happens so we can prevent it, which is of utmost importance. Senior surgeons are especially duty-bound to learn how to manage and repair this kind of complication without opening the chest.

JTD: Can you share with us the most memorable case of VATS complication in your clinical work?

Dr. Kohno: Once, when my junior was doing a left upper lobectomy, due to the lack of experience, he accidentally placed the stapler into the primary artery, which was then lacerated. The operation turned out to be a big mess, but we all learned a great lesson from it and realized we must handle all kinds of surgical problems with care.

JTD: VATS is a great advance in the treatment of chest diseases, and it is believed that it will replace open surgery one day. Do you agree?

Dr. Kohno: I agree to a great extent. I perform about 500 operations in a year, of which only around 10 are open, such as advanced lung cancer surgery, chest wall resection and so on. And the number of these kinds of surgery has been decreasing. Now, most of the procedures can be performed using VATS.

JTD: What leads you to the path of thoracic surgery?

Dr. Kohno: I was already interested in thoracic surgery when I was a medical student. At the time, I received dual trainings in cardiac and general thoracic surgeries at the Department of Thoracic Surgery, University of Tokyo. I liked to study topics such as heart replacement and congenital defects of the heart, but I was particularly interested in thoracic surgery, especially lung surgery. In 1990, I obtained a fellowship at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine. There I did several researches, received trainings for vascular procedures, and even held 22 internship training courses as an instructor. These made me even more interested in general thoracic surgery.

JTD: As a successful thoracic surgeon, what would be your advice to younger generations (like younger physicians, nurses or students) in pursuing their dreams?

Dr. Kohno: For me, thoracic surgery is a very attractive and promising field, but I have no idea what will happen in 20 years, so my advice would be that they do what they want to do and what they are interested in.

For more information about this interview, please check out the following video (Figure 2).

Figure 2 Interview with Dr. Tadasu Kohno: beware of the complications in VATS (1). Available online: http://www.asvide.com/article/view/25200


Special thanks to Brad Li, AME Publishing Company, for the editorial support.


Conflicts of Interest: The author has no conflicts of interest to declare.


  1. Li M. Interview with Dr. Tadasu Kohno: beware of the complications in VATS. Asvide 2018;5:543. Available online: http://www.asvide.com/article/view/25200

(Manting Li, JTD, jtd@amepc.org)

Cite this article as: Li M. Dr. Tadasu Kohno: beware of the complications in VATS. J Thorac Dis 2018;10(Suppl 14):S1683-S1684. doi: 10.21037/jtd.2018.05.111

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