When it comes to ease of use, imaging, and portability, pulmonologists scored disposable bronchoscopes 80 percent or higher for performance in a recently published multicenter study.
The December 2020 study, published in Respiratory Research, included physician feedback following 300 bronchoscopies conducted in Spain. Bronchoscopists were asked to rank the quality of a single-use bronchoscope – the Ambu aScope 4 Broncho from Ambu A/S.
Ambu A/S, based in Denmark, sponsored the study, but did not participate in the analysis, according to the report.
Single-use bronchoscopes and in particular their ease of use have been studied extensively in the anesthesiology field, the authors write. But they found no publications identifying the perception of pulmonologists when using single-use bronchoscopes for conventional diagnostic or therapeutic purposes.
Participating pulmonologists gave the single-use device high marks for portability, immediacy of use, and the ability to take and store pictures, the study noted.
The authors, Javier Flandes, Luis Fernando Giraldo-Cadavid and others, conducted the cross-sectional study in 21 Spanish pulmonology services using a standardized questionnaire completed by the bronchoscopists at the end of each procedure. Of the 300 procedures, 15 were done at each of the participating pulmonology services.
Bronchoscopists reported being satisfied with the aScope 4 Broncho’s performance in 96.6 percent of the procedures which were conducted between February and August 2018.
The study also looked at the learning curve involved in the use of the Ambu devices and found average scores that started at 70 percent and rose to 80 percent or higher by the ninth procedure.
An estimated 92,000 bronchoscopies are performed each year in Spain with growth expected. In contrast, about 500,000 bronchoscopy procedures are performed in the United States each year, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, based on the most current data available.