Thoracoscopy has provided chest physicians and surgeons with an
opportunity to rethink their approach to patients with pleural and
pulmonary disease. In this brief review, several methods pertaining to
videothoracoscopic procedures are described, followed by a summary of
the major indications for this procedure. The question of whether a
thoracoscopic approach to diagnosis or treatment could replace more
conventional approaches is addressed for several disease processes.
Finally, a few thoughts about future directions of this emerging
technology are shared.