If you have a suspected lung condition, turn to the lung experts at UC San Diego Health for the latest procedures to detect and sometimes even treat lung problems.

This includes robotic and other forms of bronchoscopy.

Bronchoscopy is a procedure used to look directly at the airways in the lungs using a thin, lighted tube (bronchoscope). The bronchoscope is put in the nose or mouth and moved down the throat and windpipe (trachea), and into the airways.

A health care provider can then see the voice box (larynx), trachea, and large and medium-sized airways.

Robotic-Assisted Bronchoscopy (RAB)

  • A newer procedure performed in patients who have a lung nodule or lung mass that needs a biopsy to find out if it is cancerous or not
  • The provider uses a controller to move the small tube to reach parts of the lung that might not otherwise be accessible
  • A 3-D map of your lung can be viewed on a computer screen during the procedure, allowing the provider to locate the tube in the lung and navigate to reach the nodule or mass

Flexible Bronchoscopy

  • Uses state-of-the-art video technology, providing the physician with a crystal clear picture of the patient's airways
  • Improves the ability to diagnose and treat airway disease and lung disease
  • Uses sedation and offers the ability to obtain a diagnosis of lung disease and potential treatment via the bronchoscope
  • May reduce further unnecessary procedures and surgery

Rigid Bronchoscopy

  • Allows the pulmonary physician better airway access
  • Instruments, or airway devices, can be inserted through this rigid device
  • Infections, cancers, inflammatory conditions, sarcoidosis, and lymphoma can all be diagnosed by bronchoscopy
  • Can also be used to treat airway obstruction, airway narrowing (stenosis), airway cancers, and bleeding, or remove foreign or aspirated objects

Electromagnetic navigation bronchoscopy (ENB)

  • Uses electromagnetic state-of-the-art technology that allows to obtain tissue samples of lung masses.
  • Enhances the ability for physicians to diagnose and potentially treat a variety of lung diseases, including lung cancer.
  • Physicians use specialized software to digitally identify targets using images from CT scans and then guide a bronchoscope to the target.
  • By manipulating a variety of small, flexible tools inserted through the bronchoscope, physicians are able to image and biopsy mediastinal lymph nodes and distal lesions. 

As a pioneer and a leader in this breakthrough technology, UC San Diego Health is proud to offer our patients this minimally invasive alternative to surgery. We are the regional leader in volume and overall experience with this advanced ENB technology.


All referred patients will still have the option of continuing treatment with their primary care physicians after the procedure.