[MOL] A New Form of Brochoscopy.....for lung, head and neck.... [01337] Medicine On Line

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[MOL] A New Form of Brochoscopy.....for lung, head and neck....


A new form of bronchoscopy is making it possible to detect abnormalities in lung tissue earlier. During a bronchoscopy, physicians view lung tissue through a scope inserted into the bronchial tubes. The new procedure, fluorescence bronchoscopy, uses a blue laser to illuminate the bronchi. In this light normal tissue appears bright green, while abnormal tissue is reddish-brown. According to Dr. Tracey L. Weigel, a surgeon on MSKCC’s Thoracic Service, the procedure is now being used to follow patients who have had complete surgical removal of a lung tumor or a head and neck cancer. These patients are at high risk for new lung cancers, and a second surgery is usually not an option. If a new tumor is detected early enough, though, patients may benefit from photodynamic therapy, a new, effective form of treatment for early cancers.

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