Bronchus-blocked ultrasound-guided percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy (BUS-PTNB) for intubated patients with severe lung diseases

Yuean Zhao, Faming Jiang, He Yu, Ye Wang, Zhen Wang, Peng Sun, Zhong Ni, Weiya Wang, Lili Jiang, Junping Fan, Lanlan Zhang, Charles A. Powell, Zongan Liang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Examinations based on lung tissue specimen can play a significant role in the diagnosis for critically ill and intubated patients with lung infiltration. However, severe complications including tension pneumothorax and intrabronchial hemorrhage limit the application of needle biopsy. Methods: A refined needle biopsy technique, named bronchus-blocked ultrasound-guided percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy (BUS-PTNB), was performed on four intubated patients between August 2020 and April 2021. BUS-PTNB was done at bedside, following an EPUBNOW (evaluation, preparation, ultrasound location, bronchus blocking, needle biopsy, observation, and withdrawal of blocker) workflow. Parameters including procedure feasibility, sample acquisition, perioperative conditions, and complications were observed. Tissue specimens were sent to pathological examinations and microbial tests. Results: Adequate specimens were successfully obtained from four patients. Diagnosis and treatment were correspondingly refined based on pathological and microbial tests. Intrabronchial hemorrhage occurred in patient 1 but was stopped by endobronchial blocker. Mild pneumothorax happened in patient 4 due to little air leakage, and closed thoracic drainage was placed. During the procedure, peripheral capillary hemoglobin oxygen saturation (SPO2), blood pressure, and heart rate of patient 4 fluctuated but recovered quickly. Vital signs were stable for patient 1–3. Conclusions: BUS-PTNB provides a promising, practical and feasible method in acquiring tissue specimen for critically ill patients under intratracheal intubation. It may facilitate the pathological diagnosis or other tissue-based tests for intubated patients and improve clinical outcomes. [Figure not available: see fulltext.]

Original languageEnglish
Article number359
JournalCritical Care
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021


  • Bronchoscopy
  • Endobronchial blocker
  • Intubation
  • Needle biopsy
  • Sonography


Dive into the research topics of 'Bronchus-blocked ultrasound-guided percutaneous transthoracic needle biopsy (BUS-PTNB) for intubated patients with severe lung diseases'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this