Assaf Harofeh Thoracic surgery

Thoracic surgery

The department of thoracic surgery at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center has been active for 15 years and is considered the most advanced, leading department among all thoracic surgery departments in Israel

About the department

​The department offers not only state of the art medical equipment for thoracic surgery, but also a professional, vastly experienced staff. The department's specialty is various treatment methods and thoracic surgeries, which allow the doctors to offer a suitable treatment for each patient.

For whom is the service available?

​The services offered by the department of thoracic surgery are designed for surgical treatment of lung cancer and/or other lung tumors, malignant or benign, primary or secondary, for treatment of tumors of the mediastinum and the walls of the chest cavity, esophageal cancer and/or benign tumors of the esophagus, malformation of the chest cavity wall, either congenital or due to trauma, excessive sweating, severe lung emphesema, various lung infections and/or chest cavity infections, and more.


​Aprroximately 80% of the surgeries performed at the department of thoracic surgery at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center are performed using a minimally invasive method (thoracoscopic). This method is preferable to the traditional method, which includes opening the chest cavity and sawing of the ribs, and allows performing the surgery through 2-3 tiny incisions between the ribs – one incision used to insert a video camera and two additional incisions used to enter various surgical equipment. In complex cases, that do not allow for minimally invasive surgery, the surgery is performed in the traditional method, by opening of the chest cavity.

Advantages of the minimally invasive method

  • ​Less pain after surgery
  • Shorter stay at the hospital and quick return to daily activity
  • Ability to operate on older patients
  • Ability to operate on complex patients, with other background diseases
  • Significant decrease in morbidity, with increased chances of recovery and better quality of life
  • Small scars
  • Maintenance of respiratory performance after surgery

Treatments and procedures

  • ​Lobectomy for patients suffering from lung cancer and/or other lung tumors
  • Pneumonectomy for patients suffering from lung cancer
  • Removal of tumors from the mediastinum
  • Esophagectomy for patients suffering from esophageal cancer
  • Decrease of lung volume for patients suffering from severe lung emphesema
  • Removal of bubbles from the lungs of patients suffering from primary pneumothorax or bullae
  • Joining of chest pleura for patients suffering from malignant pleural effusion
  • Repair of congenital malformations of the chest cavity walls
  • Removal of chest cavity wall for patients suffering from tumors
  • Creating an opening in the pericardium for patients suffering from pericardiac effusion
  • Insertion of a pacemaker to the left ventricle for patients suffering from severe congestive heart failure
  • Bilateral thoracoscopic sympathectomy for patients suffering from excessive sweating
  • Biopsy of the pleura, mediastinal lymph nodes, pericardium and diaphragm
  • Diaphragm plication for patients suffering from diaphragm paralysis

Medical staff

​The department of thoracic surgery at Assaf Harofeh Medical Center includes a team of senior surgeons, the most experienced in Israel in minimally invasive lung, esophagus and chest surgery. The department's staff focuses and leads complex and varied surgical domains – such as lung surgery, esophageal surgery, chest cavity wall surgery and mediastinal surgery – efficiently and professionaly, due to dozens of years of experience in these domains. The department of thoracic surgery acts in full cooperation with various departments and institutes at the medical center, including the lung institute, the imaging institute, the oncology unit, the gastroenterology unit, the pathology unit and various other departments. The head of the department is Dr. Michael Papiashwilli, one of the first specialists in minimally invasive thoracic surgery in Israel.

Assaf Harofeh Medical Center

​Assaf Harofeh Medical Center is the fourth largest university governmental hospital in Israel, and the major hospital in the Shfelah. It has outpatient clinics, an emergency department, hospitalization units and delivery units, backed by dozens of departments, institutes, clinics and laboratories for all medical sub-specialties. Personal treatment and commitment to the best medical treatment and diagnosis are provided by 3,400 doctors, researchers, auxilliary staff, nursing and administrative staff, all working together and providing professional, courteous service for patients from all over the world.

Contact information

​Phone number for appointments: 972-8-9779177, 972-57-7346871 (please call between 08:00 and 15:30, Israeli time).
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