Table 1

 Available surgical procedures

Video assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS)Achieves debridement of fibrinous pyogenic material, break down of loculations, and drainage of pus from the pleural cavity under direct vision. Leaves three small scars
Mini-thoracotomyAchieves debridement and evacuation in a similar manner to VATS but it is an open procedure leaving a small linear scar
DecorticationInvolves an open thoracotomy and excision of the thick fibrous pleural rind with evacuation of pyogenic material. It is a longer and more complicated procedure