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Liam CK, Pang YK, Poosparajah S
Correspondence: Prof Chong-Kin Liam, email@example.com
Introduction This study aims to determine whether the diagnostic yield of flexible bronchoscopy sampling procedures in patients with lung cancer was dependent on tumour location.
Methods A retrospective analysis was conducted on the diagnostic yield of bronchial washing (BW), endobronchial biopsy (EBB), bronchial brushing (BB), bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL), blind brushing (B) and transbronchial biopsy (TBB) specimens obtained at fibre-optic bronchoscopy for patients with lung cancer.
Results Of 503 patients who underwent fibre-optic bronchoscopy examination, BW, EBB, BB, BAL, B and TBB were performed on 254, 325, 67, 155, 70 and 54 patients, respectively. For patients with bronchoscopically-visible tumours, BW, EBB and BB yielded diagnostic specimens for lung cancer in 28.3 percent, 77.5 percent and 53.7 percent of patients, respectively. For patients whose tumours were not visible bronchoscopically, BAL, B and TBB yielded diagnostic specimens for lung cancer in 35.5 percent, 22.9 percent and 31.5 percent of patients, respectively. EBB was less likely to be diagnostic in patients with tumours in the middle or lingular lobe bronchi. The diagnostic yields of all the other sampling techniques were not influenced by the location of the bronchoscopically-visible or non-visible tumours.
Conclusion The diagnostic yields of bronchoscopic sampling procedures were dependent on tumour visibility during bronchoscopy and location of bronchoscopically-visible tumours.
Keywords: bronchial brushing, broncho-alveolar lavage, bronchoscopy, endo-bronchial biopsy, lung cancer, transbronchial biopsy
Singapore Med J 2007; 48(7): 625–631