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Video-assisted interventional bronchoscopy

The Hong Kong experience


Background: Major airway obstruction due to benign or malignant etiology is not uncommon and is always distressing. Intraluminal stenting has been shown to be a safe and effective approach for symptomatic relief in selected patients based on the European and North American experience.

Methods: We reviewed our experience in Hong Kong on airway stenting over a 19-month period.

Results: From February 1994 to August 1995, 33 silicone stents (Dumon stent, Cometh, Marseille, France) were placed in 23 patients (20 males, three females with mean age 61.4 years, range from 26 to 81). Eighteen stents were placed in the trachea, nine in the left main stem, five in the right main stem, and one Y-stent over the carina. Twelve patients had esophageal carcinoma involving the airway, seven had bronchial carcinoma, one had metastatic carcinoma, and three had benign strictures (of which two were due to tuberculosis). There was no procedural related mortality. Stent migration occurred in four patients (17%) and required stent change. Symptoms were improved in all patients as documented by the visual analogue scale.

Conclusion: Our experience represents the ``stentable'' diseases seen in Hong Kong, where carcinoma of the esophagus (and tuberculosis) remains prevalent. We conclude that intraluminal stenting remains a safe and effective approach in selected patients with critical airway stenosis. Complications, however, do exist and should be realized by the operator, the patients, and their families.

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Received: 4 September 1996/Accepted: 3 August 1996

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Yim, A., Abdullah, V., Izzat, M. et al. Video-assisted interventional bronchoscopy . Surg Endosc 12, 444–447 (1998).

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  • Key words: Major airway obstruction — Intraluminal stenting — Interventional bronchoscopy