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What Is an Interventional Pulmonology Unit in Europe?

Amat, Beatriz PhD*; Reichle, Günther PhD†; Agustí, Carlos PhD*; Xaubet, Antoni PhD*; Torres, Antoni PhD*

doi: 10.1097/CPM.0b013e3181c7dd00
Topics in Pulmonary Medicine

Over the last 2 decades, interventional pulmonology has experienced major technological developments. However, on the path to opening an interventional pulmonology unit many stumbling blocks may be encountered since such a task is laborious due to the great financial investment required in personnel and technology. European countries such as Germany and France have updated their old tuberculosis hospitals without forsaking techniques such as rigid bronchoscopy and thoracoscopy. These countries were pioneers in building interventional bronchoscopy units and have set an example for the rest of the European countries. This article describes how an European interventional pulmonology unit should be organized, although this does not mean that it should be different in others part of the world, such as Japan or the United States. What should an interventional pulmonology unit be like? In our opinion, such a unit should be set up in a tertiary hospital in which all the necessary equipment should be available, along with physicians with expertise in performing interventional pulmonology.

This manuscript reviews the diagnostic approach and avoidable pitfalls for patients with suspected lung cancer. Emphasis should be on the use of multimodality staging, since accurate staging assures that each patient receives the correct treatment. There is mounting evidence that multidisciplinary teams of lung cancer-oriented specialists provide care that improves important outcomes.

From the *Servei de Pneumologia, Institut Clínic del Tòrax, Hospital Clínic, Barcelona, Spain; and †Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Lungenklinik Hemer, Hemer, Germany.

Address correspondence to: Beatriz Amat, PhD, Hospital de Levante, Servicio de Neumología C/Dr. Santiago Ramón y Cajal n° 7. 03503 Benidorm (Alicante), Spain. E-mail: beatrizamat@hotmail.com.

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.