Objective: Fiberoptic bronchoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure with a high diagnostic yield. The aim of this study was to document the usefulness of the procedure in the diagnosis of various respiratory disorders in a Middle East country. Methods: Data on all bronchoscopies carried out in Chest Diseases Hospital, Kuwait from January 1996 to December 1998 were retrospectively collected. Results: Out of 968 cases, only 620 (64%) patients had a full follow up. Suspected pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) (51.6%), unresolving pneumonia (16.1%), hemoptysis with a normal chest radiograph (8.4%), lung mass (7.7%) and hilar lymphadenopathy (3.2%) were the most common indications. Eleven percent of patients who underwent bronchoscopy had a normal chest radiograph, the reason being hemoptysis in 75.4%, inhalation injury in 21.8% and suspected upper airway obstruction in 2.9%. In smear negative suspected TB cases, 22.5% proved to have active disease. Acid fast bacillus was identified in bronchoalveolar lavage, either by smear or culture, in 44 (73.3%) patients with suspected pulmonary TB and in 6 (54.5%) patients with miliary shadows. An underlying cause was identified in 28 (28%) patients with unresolving pneumonia. Ninety-four percent of cases with clinical impression of bronchogenic carcinoma could be diagnosed. Transbronchial biopsy was diagnostic in 79% patients with diffuse parenchymal lung disease. No complications other than transient hypoxemia and controllable bleeding were noticed. Conclusion: Generally, the indications for flexible fiberoptic bronchoscopy remained similar to elsewhere. Unlike western series, the majority of the cases were for the diagnosis of pulmonary infections especially TB.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Saudi Medical Journal|
|Publication status||Published - Oct 2004|
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