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Official Journal of the Italian Society of Thoracic Endoscopy
Indexed/Abstracted in: EMBASE, Scopus
Online ISSN 1827-1723
Kyriakoudi A., Zias N.
Endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) is a new diagnostic tool that can identify enlarged mediastinal lymph nodes and combined with transbronchial needle aspiration (TBNA) can provide tissue samples of these suspicious lesions eliminating the need for mediastinoscopy or other more invasive procedures. EBUS-TBNA and complimentary endoscopic ultrasound fine needle aspiration can screen and sample all the mediastinal lymph nodes in an outpatient setting providing fast and accurate diagnosis of metastatic lymph nodes. This is highly valuable for lung cancer staging especially for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) when the decision for surgery is based at large on the lymph node classification. The procedure (EBUS-TBNA) is safe, cost effective and with high specificity, sensitivity and accuracy. An experienced bronchoscopist can rely on the results of the EBUS-TBNA procedure but the true learning curve of a naïve operator can be reached when up to 40 procedures have been performed under guidance. We encourage the use of this new technique as a minimal invasive method to identify mediastinal diseases but most often to stage patients with primary NSCLC.