Comparison of Transbronchial Lung Biopsy Yield between Standard Forceps and Electrocautery Hot Forceps in Swine

Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Internal Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710, USA.
Respiration (Impact Factor: 2.59). 09/2009; 79(2):137-40. DOI: 10.1159/000235818
Source: PubMed


Transbronchial lung biopsy (TBLB) is a commonly performed bronchoscopic procedure. Previous studies have suggested that larger biopsy forceps may improve diagnostic yield; however, the risk of bleeding associated with larger samples may be increased. The hot forceps are large forceps that are connected to an electrocautery system to minimize bleeding at the time of biopsy.
We evaluated the hot forceps for improvement in biopsy size and the number of sampled alveoli.
TBLBs were performed in 2 swine using one type of the forceps, followed by the other forceps 24 h later. Electrocautery was applied from closure of the forceps to retrieval of the sample. A blinded pathologist measured the size of each sample in its longest dimension and calculated the total alveolar content within the largest cross-section from each biopsy.
A total of 74 biopsies were collected using each forceps type. Alveolar tissue was present in 25/74 and 26/74 of the biopsies using the hot and conventional forceps, respectively. There was no difference in the size of biopsies collected (2.10 +/- 1.10 vs. 1.83 +/- 0.94 mm; p = 0.164) or in the amount of alveoli per sample (343.2 +/- 402.4 vs. 439.5 +/- 463.5 alveoli; p = 0.433) for hot and conventional forceps, respectively. There was no artifact related to the use of electrocautery, and bleeding was minimal using either forceps system.
The use of the electrocautery hot forceps for TBLB did not result in improvement of the size of biopsies or the amount of collected alveolar tissue in healthy pigs.

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