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Monaldi Arch Chest Dis. 2008 Jun;69(2):59-64.

The value of transbronchial lung biopsy using jumbo forceps via rigid bronchoscope in diffuse lung disease.

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Dipartimento Toracico, Ospedale GB Morgagni, Forlì, Italy.



Transbronchial lung biopsy (TBLB) is a valuable procedure used to obtain a parenchymal specimen in the evaluation of diffuse lung infiltrates. Large forceps are expected to result in larger specimens and improve diagnostic yield.


The objective of this study was to evaluate diagnostic yield of TBLB using large modified flexible gastroenterological forceps ("Jumbo forceps") compared with 'normal' flexible forceps via rigid bronchoscopy in patients with diffuse parenchymal lung disease (DPLD).


The study was a prospective analysis of 95 patients who underwent fluoroscopy guided TBLB over a two year period. Patients with a lung mass or solitary lung nodule undergoing TBLB were excluded. The larger and small forceps were used in a random sequence to avoid a reduction in diagnostic yield of the second series of biopsies related to possible bleeding by first series of biopsies. To minimize the consequence of haemorrhage, we performed every rigid bronchoscopy, placing a non inflated Fogarty balloon and a rigid aspirator (diameter 4 mm) in lobar bronchus near the biopsy segment. The Fogarty balloon has been inflated in case of bleeding. After the bleeding was controlled we continued to operate up to the biopsy segment.


Diagnostic yield of TBLB using Jumbo forceps was significantly higher than using normal flexible forceps via rigid bronchoscopy in patients with DPLD (p = 0.001). In 74 out of 95 patients (78%) the diagnosis was placed with Jumbo forcep while the smaller forcep was diagnostic in 62 out of 95 patients (65%). Large forceps obtained significantly more tissue than the small forceps; the biopsy specimen taken with normal forcep measured in average 1.4 x 1.0 mm and the larger biopsy taken with jumbo forcep measured in average 2.5 x 1.9 mm (p < 0.005).


The use of large biopsy forceps to perform TBLB via rigid bronchoscope can significantly increase diagnostic yield in the pathological diagnosis of diffuse infiltrative lung disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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