Evidence for bronchoscopic lung volume reduction (BLVR) is based on phase 2 studies and small randomized controlled trials with in- and exclusion criteria defining a therapeutic window and contraindications. Little is known about the applicability in routine clinical practice.
Which percentage of patients with severe emphysema referred to a specialized treatment center for BLVR is ultimately suitable for interventional bronchoscopic treatment? What is the relevance of the different contraindications?
Retrospective evaluation of emphysema patients referred to Asklepios Fachkliniken Munich-Gauting for BLVR between January 2014 and June 2015.
138 patients were referred for evaluation of BLVR. 38 patients (27.5%) underwent BLVR procedures (valves n = 18; coils n = 18; thermal vapor ablation n = 2). 100 patients (72.5%) were deemed not eligible for BLVR based on the following contraindications: 34% emphysema morphology and emphysema-related findings (severe homogeneous emphysema, extensive pleuropulmonary adhesions, postinflammatory scaring with natural volume reduction, giant bullae), 16% active smoking; 9% pulmonary function not within indication range; 8% unexpected CT findings (nodules, cancer, interstitial disease); 8% chronic ventilatory failure; 8% patient refused BLVR; 5% relevant comorbidity; 5% frequent exacerbations, 3% preserved quality of life, 4% other.
BLVR is a therapeutic option for highly selected patients. In our cohort, one in four could be treated. These data highlight the limitations of BLVR under real-life conditions.
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May, N., Niehaus-Gebele, C., Reichenberger, F. et al. Screening for Bronchoscopic Lung Volume Reduction: Reasons for Not Receiving Interventional Treatment. Lung 198, 221–228 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00408-019-00303-7
- Bronchoscopic lung volume reduction (BLVR)
- Real-life data