Respiration; international review of thoracic diseases 2017 07 26() doi 10.1159/000478786
Transbronchial lung cryobiopsy (TLCB), performed with a flexible cryoprobe, is an interventional pulmonology procedure that has proved its diagnostic value for interstitial pulmonary disease. However, it has not been explored extensively as a diagnostic tool for patients with non-interstitial lung pathology, including infectious and malignant diseases.
To evaluate the diagnostic yield and safety of an interventional pulmonology approach that integrates TLCB and bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) for the diagnosis of non-interstitial pulmonary disease.
TLCB and BAL were performed under general anesthesia through the same bronchoscopic access on 103 adult patients (including immunocompromised HIV+ individuals) with clinical/radiological evidence of non-interstitial lung disease admitted to the Interventional Pulmonology Service between May 2015 and April 2016. Samples obtained were sent to pathology and microbiology laboratories for standard diagnostic analysis.
Samples of TLCB allowed the diagnosis of 75.7% of patients, while 39.8% were diagnosed from BAL. The global diagnostic yield from the dual sampling was 92.2%. TLCB allowed the diagnosis of 94.7% of cancer cases and 60.0% of infectious cases, while BAL samples identified 77.5% of infectious cases and 21.2% of malignant lesions. The incidence of complications was 4.9% with full recovery in all cases.
Simultaneous TLCB and BAL constitute a safe and useful diagnostic procedure for non-interstitial pulmonary disease, with a global diagnostic yield of 92.2%. Complementary advantages of samples obtained by each technique result in a robust diagnostic strategy for infectious and malignant disease in adults, including HIV+ individuals.