We performed this study to evaluate the role of transesophageal endoscopic ultrasound with bronchoscope-guided fine-needle aspiration (EUS-B-FNA) following endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration (EBUS-TBNA) in the mediastinal staging of lung cancer.
In this prospective study, we applied transbronchial and transesophageal ultrasonography using an ultrasound bronchoscope on patients with confirmed or strongly suspected potentially operable non-small cell lung cancer. Following EBUS-TBNA, EUS-B-FNA was used for mediastinal nodes that were inaccessible or difficult to access by EBUS-TBNA. The accessibility by EBUS-TBNA and EUS-B-FNA to mediastinal nodal stations having at least one node ≥ 5 mm was also checked.
In 150 patients, we performed EBUS-TBNA and EUS-B-FNA on 299 and 64 mediastinal nodal stations, respectively. Among 143 evaluable patients, EBUS-TBNA diagnosed mediastinal metastasis in 38 patients. EUS-B-FNA identified mediastinal metastasis in three additional patients. Surgery diagnosed mediastinal metastasis in four more patients. The sensitivity, negative predictive value, and diagnostic accuracy of EBUS-TBNA in the detection of mediastinal metastasis were 84.4%, 93.3%, and 95.1%, respectively. These values for the combined approach of EBUS-TBNA and EUS-B-FNA increased to 91.1%, 96.1%, and 97.2%, respectively, although the differences were not statistically significant (P = .332, P = .379, and P = .360, respectively). Among 473 mediastinal nodal stations having at least one node ≥ 5 mm that were evaluated, the proportion of accessible mediastinal nodal stations by EBUS-TBNA was 78.6%, and the proportion increased to 84.8% by combining EUS-B-FNA with EBUS-TBNA (P = .015).
Following EBUS-TBNA in the mediastinal staging of potentially operable lung cancer, the accessibility to mediastinal nodal stations increased by adding EUS-B-FNA and an additional diagnostic gain might be obtained by EUS-B-FNA.