Bronchoscopy (image-guided and navigational)
Performed by a pulmonologist to find out exactly what is causing a problem inside the lung or lungs, bronchoscopy involves the insertion of a tiny tube called a bronchoscope through the nose or mouth and then channeled down the throat into the lungs. The bronchoscope has a small camera attached to its end, which displays images of the lungs on a monitor. During the procedure, the pulmonologist may also take small samples of tissue for biopsy studies. Depending on the possible cause of the lung tissue, there are a variety of bronchoscope types that may be used:
- Rigid Bronchoscopy – used in circumstances where there is bleeding in the lungs, or an object is blocking the airway.
- Standard diagnostic flexible bronchoscopy – a thin flexible tube is usually used to perform diagnostic bronchoscopy procedures.
- Ultra-thin bronchoscopy – this type of bronchoscopy device is used to help a pulmonologist to gain access to peripheral lung regions.