Navigation bronchoscopy: A new tool for pulmonary infections.


Ashraf SF, Lau KKW.
Med Mycol. 2019 Jun 1;57(Supplement_3):S287-S293.


Infections remain a common cause of lung nodules, masses, and cavities. Safe tissue sampling is required to establish a diagnosis, differentiate between malignant and infectious causes, and provide microbiological material for characterization and sensitivity analysis. Tissue samples could be obtained bronchoscopically, percutaneously, or through surgical biopsy. Among these, bronchoscopy is the safest by avoiding the complications of pleural and chest wall puncture including pneumothorax, pain, pleural contamination and empyema, and hemothorax. However, the diagnostic yield with conventional bronchoscopy for small, peripheral lesions is poor. Electromagnetic navigationbronchoscopy (ENB) is a technique where the bronchoscope and working channel are guided through the bronchial tree to accurately reach a peripheral lesion. It dramatically improves on the diagnostic yield of peripheral lesions especially of small lesions, and its role has developed beyond diagnosis to treatment enablement and to direct therapy. Its role in infection is less defined, but it has value especially in the diagnosis of fungal and mycobacterial infections and in cavitating lesions. This review will explore what electromagnetic navigationbronchoscopy is, its use in diagnosis and therapy, and its role in the management of pulmonary infections. The potential for local therapy delivery for infection is also discussed.


Cavitating lesion; Cone beam CT; Guided bronchoscopy; Hybrid theatre; Navigation Bronchoscopy