State of the art: pleuroscopy

Pyng Lee, Henri G Colt
Journal of Thoracic Oncology 2007, 2 (7): 663-70
The terms pleuroscopy, thoracoscopy, medical thoracoscopy, and video-assisted thoracic surgery are often used interchangeably to describe a minimally invasive procedure that provides access to the pleural space, parietal pleura, lung, and other structures within the thoracic cavity. Pleuroscopy is a more exact term for describing visualization of the pleura and contents of the pleural cavity using an endoscope. This procedure provides physicians a window into the pleural space, to perform biopsy of the parietal pleura under direct visual guidance, particularly for biopsies in cases of exudative effusions with unclear origin, chest tube placement, and pleurodesis to prevent recurrent pleural effusion or pneumothorax in selected patients. In this state-of-the-art review, we discuss the indications, contraindications, and complications of pleuroscopy, and its role in thoracic oncology.

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