Interventional Bronchoscopy in Children
Paediatric airway endoscopy is accepted as a diagnostic and therapeutic procedure, with an expanding number of indications and applications in children. The aim of this European Respiratory Society task force was to produce a statement on interventional bronchoscopy in children, describing the evidence available at present and current clinical practice, and identifying areas deserving further investigation. The multidisciplinary task force panel performed a systematic review of the literature, focusing on whole lung lavage, transbronchial and endobronchial biopsy, transbronchial needle aspiration with endobronchial ultrasound, foreign body extraction, balloon dilation and occlusion, laser-assisted procedures, usage of airway stents, microdebriders, cryotherapy, endoscopic intubation, application of drugs and other liquids, and caregiver perspectives. There is a scarcity of published evidence in this field, and in many cases the task force had to resort to the collective clinical experience of the committee to develop this statement. The highlighted gaps in knowledge underline the need for further research and serve as a call to paediatric bronchoscopists to work together in multicentre collaborations, for the benefit of children with airway disorders.