Objective: The purpose of this report is to evaluate our results in patients who underwent prosthetic bony reconstruction after chest wall resection. Methods: We retrospectively reviewed all patients who underwent chest wall resection and reconstruction with prosthetic material at the Mayo Clinic. Results: From January 1, 1977, to December 31, 1992, 197 patients (109 male patients and 88 female patients) underwent chest wall resection and reconstruction with prosthetic material. Median age was 59 years (range, 11- 86 years). The indication for resection was recurrent chest wall malignancy in 65 patients (33.0%), primary chest wall malignancy in 62 patients (31.5%), contiguous lung or breast carcinoma in 58 patients (29.4%), and other reasons in 12 patients (6.1%). Three patients (1.5%) each had an open draining wound. This review covers 2 time periods. Sixty-four patients (32.5%) underwent reconstruction with polypropylene mesh during the period from 1977 to 1986. One hundred thirty-three patients (67.5%) underwent reconstruction with polytetrafluoroethylene from 1984 to 1992. Soft tissue coverage was achieved with transposed muscle in 116 patients (58.9%), local tissue in 81 patients (41.1%), and omentum in 3 patients (1.5%). There were 8 deaths (operative mortality rate, 4.1%). Ninety-one patients (46.2%) experienced complications. Seromas occurred in 14 patients (7.1%). Wound infections occurred in 9 patients (4.6%; 5 patients with polypropylene mesh and 4 patients with polytetrafluoroethylene). The prosthesis was removed in all 5 patients with polypropylene mesh and in none of the patients with polytetrafluoroethylene. Follow-up was complete in 179 operative survivors (94.7%) and ranged from 1 to 204 months (median, 26 months). A well-healed asymptomatic wound was present in 127 patients (70.9%). Conclusions: Chest wall resection and reconstruction with prosthetic material will yield satisfactory results in most patients. Little difference exists between polypropylene mesh and polytetrafluoroethylene.