January - March 2007: 
Volume 20, Issue 1

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An audit of fiberoptic bronchoscopy practice in a private hospital
SUMMARY. The indications for, and safety and effectiveness of 200 consecutive diagnostic fiberoptic bronchoscopic examinations performed in a private hospital were audited. Of these, 67 (33.5%) concerned outpatients, and the others inpatients. For 112 examinations (56%) no sedation was used. The investigation was generally well tolerated, and was completed in 198 patients (99%) with no complications. A positive histological or cytological result was obtained in 61 of 83 patients with visible indications of malignancy (73.5%). In 36 cases (18%) the investigation excluded malignancy in patients with a suspicious clinical-radiological picture, while 9 patients (4.5%) were referred for further investigation. Diagnostic fiberoptic bronchoscopy can be easily and safely performed on both in- and out-patients, often without need for sedation. It is of value both in diagnosing specific disease entities and in excluding malignancy, in patients with suspicious clinical or radiological features. As the cost of invasive medical procedures is considerable, the system of insurance coverage in Greece should be radically revised, in order that the performance of this investigation indicated, when should not be financially burdensome for the patient. Pneumon 2007; 20(1):56-62.