A lung abscess is a subacute infection in which an area of necrosis forms in the lung parenchyma. It usually is in a dependent section of the lung, more often involves the right lung than the left, and is most commonly seen after aspiration of oropharyngeal secretions. Lung abscesses have a slow, insidious presentation and usually develop 1-2 weeks after the initial aspiration event. If not responsive to conservative treatment they may require surgery.
Empyema is defined as pus in the pleural space. It typically is a complication of pneumonia. However, it can also arise from penetrating chest trauma, esophageal rupture, complication from lung surgery, or inoculation of the pleural cavity after thoracentesis or chest tube placement. An empyema can also occur from extension of a subdiaphragmatic or paravertebral abscess.
Early Surgery has been shown to be of benefit in treatment of uncontrolled infections whether lung absecces or empyema.
These can be done by open, VATS or Robotic Surgery.