What is bronchoscopy?
Bronchoscopy is the inspection of our large airways. The pulmonologist uses a special instrument ( the bronchoscope ) and examines larynx, trachea and bronchi. The test is usually done with the use of fiber optic bronchoscope. This is a very thin and flexible instrument. Most of the times, bronchoscope is inserted through the nose of the patient, while less frequently through the mouth.
Bronchoscopy is generally an examination without frequent serious complications, provided that all necessary precautions are taken. It is performed with the help of sedation which helps relaxing the patient and causing post-procedural amnesia. Other drugs that suppress the cough reflex and sputum production are also used, so that the examination does not cause any discomfort for the patient. With bronchoscopy, your pulmonologist may also take biopsies from various parts of the respiratory system for microbiological examination or he may even take washings from lung alveoli to investigate various diseases ( interstitial lung disease, lung cancer, etc. ). It is emphasized that all these tests are completely painless for the patient.
Bronchoscopy usually lasts about 30 minutes. However, at least two hours are needed for the whole process until the complete recovery of patient.
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