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The main types of surgery to remove thymic cancers are:
Sternotomy/Thymectomy Sternotomy is the most common surgery used to treat thymomas. In a sternotomy, your doctor makes a vertical incision through the breastbone to reach the front of the mediastinum. Since no chest wall muscles are included in the incision, pain and recovery time after the operation is usually limited.
Trans Cervical Thymectomy The size and location of your tumor may allow your surgeon to avoid an incision in the sternum and allow your surgeon to access and remove the tumor through tiny incisions at your neckline. No bone is divided. Only the skin is cut. Enlarged thymuses and those with very small tumors may be removed this way, but not sizeable tumors.
Thoracotomy In a thoracotomy, your doctor reaches your mediastinum by making an incision on your back or on your side, or sometimes between your ribs. After a thoracotomy, most people stay in the hospital for about 3 to 4 days.