Transbronchial needle aspiration in routine fiberoptic bronchoscopy

M. Salathe, M. Soler, C. T. Bolliger, P. Dalquen, A. P. Perruchoud

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to evaluate the yield of transbronchial needle aspiration (TBNA) in a clinical routine setting of a teaching hospital for the diagnosis and staging of bronchogenic carcinoma in comparison to the results of controlled clinical studies. We reviewed our results with Wang retractable needle catheters during a 9-month period. The needle catheters were used in 72 patients, 43 patients had a final diagnosis of bronchogenic carcinoma. Classical bronchial washes, brushings and forceps biopsies led to the diagnosis in 28 patients (65%). The addition of TBNA increased the diagnostic yield by 14% (6 patients) to 79% overall. In 32 patients staging of mediastinal lymph nodes was attempted. Positive TBNA proved inoperability in 9 patients. In 7 patients TBNA was used to investigate peripheral masses. Two patients had a malignant tumor, of which one was diagnosed by TBNA. Overall, TBNA revealed important information with clinical consequences in 16 of 72 patients (22%). There were no complications. We conclude that TBNA significantly increases the diagnostic yield of fiberoptic bronchoscopy and carries only a minimal risk. Our results, obtained in the clinical routine setting of a teaching hospital, are comparable to the reported results of controlled studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-8
Number of pages4
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1992


  • Bronchial carcinoma
  • Routine fiberoptic bronchoscopy
  • Transbronchial needle aspiration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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