|One of the more recently discovered
treatments, lung-volume-reduction surgery, was believed to be a very effective
treatment against emphysema. As a result, a clinical trial was run
by a group of doctors to determine the effectiveness of the surgery.
The National Emphysema Treatment Trial Research Group conducted this
trial, and used 1,218 patients that had been diagnosed with severe emphysema
(Fishman and others 2003). The selected patients were divided into
two groups; one of which continued their normal medical treatment, while
the other received lung-volume- reduction surgery (Fishman and others 2003).
The purpose of this experiment was to determine how effective lung-volume-reduction
surgery would be on patients’ mortality rate and their exercise capacity
(Fishman and others 2003). Results showed the research group that
the “lung-volume-reduction surgery increases the chance of improved exercise
capacity but does not confer a survival advantage over medical therapy”
(Fishman and others 2003). The trial proved the surgery to be only
somewhat effective against the disease, but was still important in the overall
search for better treatments.
In the history of emphysema research, there have been numerous experiments
and trials; but this trial is significant because it showed how researchers
are continuously getting closer to finding a successful treatment for improving
patients' way of life.