Endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration for staging of non-small cell lung cancer
Accurate staging for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is essential to guide therapy. While computed tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET) scan can indicate whether mediastinal lymphadenopathy is present, histologic confirmation is required to complete the staging evaluation. Endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration (EBUS-TBNA) is a minimally invasive technique associated with similar diagnostic yield and improved postoperative pain and complication rates compared to mediastinoscopy. We share the surgical technique for EBUS-TBNA based on our experience. An 81-year-old man underwent EBUS-TBNA for concurrent tissue diagnosis and mediastinal staging of a hypermetabolic left lower lobe mass and subcarinal lymph node. Our patient had no perioperative complications and was discharged home on the same day. Histologic evaluation demonstrated squamous cell carcinoma in the left lower lobe and subcarinal lymph node. EBUS-TBNA provides histologic confirmation of suspicious mediastinal lymph nodes seen on imaging. Clinicians should consider EBUS-TBNA as a mediastinal staging modality for patients with NSCLC.