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- Training in and Experience with Endobronchial Ultrasound. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Respiration 2014 Nov 12.
Background: Diagnosing mediastinal and hilar lymphadenopathy and staging lung cancer with endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS)-guided transbronchial needle aspiration (TBNA) are on the rise, but uncertainty surrounds the optimal number of cases needed to achieve acceptable yields. Objectives: To determine the threshold at which EBUS-TBNA reaches adequate yields among trainees and skilled bronchoscopists. Methods: We reviewed all EBUS-TBNAs performed at our medical center since implementing the use of EBUS (n = 222). Results: EBUS-TBNAs were performed in 222 patients (344 nodes). The percentage of adequate specimens sampled (diagnostic specimens or nodal tissue) rose from 66% in 2008 to 90% in 2012 (p < 0.01) and cancer yield improved from 34% in 2008 to 48% in 2012 (p < 0.01). Attending physicians who performed an average of more than 10 procedures per year had higher yields compared to those who performed fewer than 10 procedures per year (86 vs. 68%, p < 0.01). The yield of trainees also improved with every 10 procedures (79, 90 and 95%, p < 0.001) and that of attending physicians with experience (1-25 procedures: 78% yield, 26-50 procedures: 87% yield and 50+ procedures: 90% yield; p < 0.01). Among trainees, failure rates declined steadily. Conclusion: EBUS-TBNA yield (malignant and benign) increases with increasing experience amongst experienced bronchoscopists and trainees as early as the first 20-25 procedures. Pulmonary trainees had a rapid decline in failure rates. These findings suggest that in an academic environment a minimum of 20-25 procedures is needed to achieve acceptable yields. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Virtual bronchoscopic navigation for peripheral pulmonary lesions. [Journal Article]
- Respiration 2014; 88(5):430-40.
Virtual bronchoscopic navigation (VBN) is a method in which the bronchoscope is guided on the bronchial route to a peripheral lesion using virtual bronchoscopic images. In reports on VBN for peripheral pulmonary lesions searched in PubMed as of November 2013, the diagnostic yield by ultrathin bronchoscopy in combination with computed tomography and VBN was within the range of 65.4-81.6%. Using endobronchial ultrasonography with a guide sheath (EBUS-GS) and VBN, it was between 63.3 and 84.4%, and using X-ray fluoroscopy and VBN, it was between 62.5 and 78.7%. The overall diagnostic yield was 73.8% [95% confidence interval (CI) 70.9-76.8%] and that for lesions ≤2 cm was 67.4% (95% CI 63.3-71.5%). These values indicate high diagnostic rates. In randomized comparative trials, the combination of VBN with EBUS-GS improved the diagnostic yield and shortened the examination time. The diagnostic yields for lesions in the right upper lobe, those invisible on posterior-anterior radiographs and those located in the peripheral third of the lung field were improved by VBN on ultrathin bronchoscopy in combination with X-ray fluoroscopy. The usefulness of VBN was also found on meta-analysis. Taken together, VBN is a promising navigational bronchoscopy method as it requires no specific training, has a low overall complication rate of 1.0% (95% CI 0.2-1.8%) and does not directly induce or cause severe complications. To maximize the full potential of VBN and promote its use, investigation of cases in which it is useful, determination of the optimum combination of procedures, a cost/benefit analysis and advancement of the VBN system are warranted. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- M-Mode: A Valuable Tool in Cardiology, Is Not Yet Ready to Use in Pneumology. [LETTER]
- Respiration 2014 Nov 12.
- Probe-Based Confocal Laser Endomicroscopy Imaging of Endobronchial Hamartomas. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Respiration 2014 Nov 14.
Probe-based confocal laser endomicroscopy (pCLE) is a new technique that can microscopically image the airways in vivo during ordinary flexible bronchoscope procedures. pCLE can visualize the basement membrane of the bronchial epithelium, allowing the study of the different changes in benign or malignant/premalignant bronchial lesions. We present 2 cases of pathology-proven endobronchial hamartoma diagnosed by biopsy which show characteristic images under pCLE examination. The tumor was removed in both cases by rigid bronchoscopy using a diathermy loop and a cryoprobe. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Guideline for the Acquisition and Preparation of Conventional and Endobronchial Ultrasound-Guided Transbronchial Needle Aspiration Specimens for the Diagnosis and Molecular Testing of Patients with Known or Suspected Lung Cancer. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Respiration 2014 Nov 5.
Rationale: Conventional transbronchial needle aspiration (TBNA) and endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS)-TBNA are widely accepted tools for the diagnosis and staging of lung cancer and the initial procedure of choice for staging. Obtaining adequate specimens is key to provide a specific histologic and molecular diagnosis of lung cancer. Objectives: To develop practice guidelines on the acquisition and preparation of conventional TBNA and EBUS-TBNA specimens for the diagnosis and molecular testing of (suspected) lung cancer. We hope to improve the global unification of procedure standards, maximize the yield and identify areas for research. Methods: Systematic electronic database searches were conducted to identify relevant studies for inclusion in the guideline [PubMed and the Cochrane Library (including the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews)]. Main Results: The number of needle aspirations with both conventional TBNA and EBUS-TBNA was found to impact the diagnostic yield, with at least 3 passes needed for optimal performance. Neither needle gauge nor the use of miniforceps, the use of suction or the type of sedation/anesthesia has been found to improve the diagnostic yield for lung cancer. The use of rapid on-site cytology examination does not increase the diagnostic yield. Molecular analysis (i.e. EGFR, KRAS and ALK) can be routinely performed on the majority of cytological samples obtained by EBUS-TBNA and conventional TBNA. There does not appear to be a superior method for specimen preparation (i.e. slide staining, cell blocks or core tissue). It is likely that optimal specimen preparation may vary between institutions depending on the expertise of pathology colleagues. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Lung Ultrasonography May Provide an Indirect Estimation of Lung Porosity and Airspace Geometry. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Respiration 2014 Nov 5.
Background: Echographic vertical artifacts (B-lines) in chest ultrasonography have often been associated with pathological patterns. A scientifically sound explanation of these artifacts has not yet been proposed. Objectives: The 'spongy' nature of the lung in its liquid and solid components and the changes that take place in peripheral airspace (PAS) geometry might be the key point to understanding these phenomena. Methods: Six excised right rabbit lungs were obtained. Each lung underwent direct ultrasound evaluation in two different conditions: at complete tissue elastic recoil volume and at pulmonary expansion volume achieved by applying a constant positive pressure of 12 cm H2O. Lung volumes and densities were reported in both conditions. Histological examination was performed on three naturally collapsed lungs and on three lungs under positive pressure inflation after having been fixed in formalin solution. Results: Mean volumes of naturally collapsed lungs and fixed expanded lungs were 11.2 ± 0.36 and 44.83 ± 3.03 ml, respectively. Mean densities were 0.622 ± 0.016 and 0.155 ± 0.007 g/ml, respectively. Ultrasound evaluation of collapsed lungs showed dense vertical artifacts and a 'white lung' pattern, while the evaluation of expanded lungs showed hyperechoic line and horizontal artifacts of reflection. Histological evaluation showed a different PAS geometry in collapsed lungs caused by alveolar size reduction and shape changes with unfolded and closed units modifying the peripheral porosity of the frothy nature of the lung. Conclusions: Airspace geometry, frothy nature and porosity are the determinants of the different behavior of ultrasound interacting with the subpleural lung parenchyma. Chest ultrasound may thus be interpreted as an indirect 'estimator' of lung porosity. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- The Role of Extracellular Matrix Quality in Pulmonary Fibrosis. [JOURNAL ARTICLE]
- Respiration 2014 Oct 29.
This review discusses the role of extracellular matrix (ECM) quality in the pathogenesis of pulmonary fibrosis (PF). In PF, the highly ordered structure of collagens and elastin within the ECM of the lung is severely disrupted and lacks its original tissue quality. Discussions about the ECM have focused on the role of protein quantity in relation to the progression of PF, while the importance of lung ECM quality, defined by the levels of ECM protein modifications and by the protein distribution in lung tissue, has not been properly addressed. The quality and function of proteins may be altered by different post-translational modifications (PTMs), such as cross-linking, proteolytic cleavage, citrullination, misfolding and glycosylation. This paper is the first to review key data from the literature related to the lung ECM at the molecular level, relate these to changes observed at a macroscopic level and evaluate which PTMs most likely contribute to PF. This paper also reviews the role of novel neo-epitope-specific biomarkers in the early diagnosis and prognosis of fibrotic disorders. We discuss and argue that the altered quality of the individual ECM proteins contributes to the progression of PF and may also lead to the increased quantity of lung proteins. Thus, both quantity and quality appear to be of utmost importance. © 2014 S. Karger AG, Basel.
- Autobullectomy in Patients with COPD. [LETTER]
- Respiration 2014 Oct 25.