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A traditional flexible fiberoptic bronchoscopy is a procedure performed to examine patients air passages with a small camera that is located at the end of a flexible tube. The tube also has a small channel to collect tissue samples that can be used for disease diagnosis. Traditional bronchoscopy has limited capability to reach far into the lung and may often not reach small nodules, some of which may harbor early-stage cancer.
“Traditional cameras do not allow us to reach deep into the lung” explains Dr. Eugene Shostak, Interventional Pulmonologist and Assistant Professor of Medicine in Cardiothoracic Surgery. “We now know that the periphery of the lung is not good for traditional bronchoscopy. Many lesions require twists and turns to get to them, and our instruments couldn’t make those twists and turns because they were stiff, nor did we have any sort of image guidance to reach them.”
In the last decade the pulmonary and thoracic communities have seen significant expansion of advanced diagnostic bronchoscopic technologies, all of which are available to our patients at Weill Cornell Medicine.