Alert

Updates

COVID-19: Vaccine information and additional resources | Medicaid: The program is changing and you must take steps to keep your UNC Health providers

Thoracic Surgery

When do you need a thoracic expert?

You or a loved one might need thoracic surgery for a variety of reasons:

  • Some people have injuries or accidents that damage the chest area.
  • Some have a growth or disease such as cancer.
  • Others are born with conditions that require surgery to improve how their body works or quality of life.

No matter why someone needs thoracic surgery, you can rely on the expertise and experience of the surgeons of North Carolina Surgery and the entire UNC REX Healthcare team. Our physicians have earned certifications from national medical boards, including the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Thoracic Surgery.

They work closely with dedicated and experienced professionals to provide excellent care for every patient.

Surgeries and treatments

Most of the time, we are able to perform surgery that uses advanced tools and techniques that involve only small cuts, or incisions, instead of traditional surgery. We also use robots and 3-dimensional video cameras to help us perform some of the most precise surgery possible anywhere.

Common reasons for surgery of the esophagus include:

Common tests for conditions of the esophagus are:

  • Upper GI (gastrointestinal) series, a group of x-rays using a barium swallow
  • X-ray with barium swallow, where the patient drinks a liquid that coats the inside of the esophagus so that it shows up better on an X-ray.
  • Endoscopy, where a doctor passes a thin tube with lights and a camera or other device to see the esophagus.
  • Biopsy, when a doctor takes a little bit of tissue to test for cancer or other conditions. If a biopsy is needed, it's done during an endoscopy.
  • CT scan, or computed tomography scan, which is a type of X-ray