BTS Guideline for diagnostic flexible bronchoscopy in adults

NICE Accredited

British Thoracic Society - BTS
British Thoracic Society (BTS)
Publication date:
10 July 2013


This guideline was formulated following consultation with stakeholders from the medical and nursing professions, patient groups and healthcare management. Basic diagnostic procedures in adults using a flexible bronchoscope are included in the guideline.  

Topics covered in the guideline

  • Monitoring of a patient during the procedure.
  • Specific precautions, contraindications and complications.
  • Sedation, premedication and topical anaesthesia.
  • FB in specific patient groups.
  • Role of bronchoscopy in infections.
  • FB in the ICU.
  • Cleaning and disinfection of equipment.
  • Staffing and staff safety.
  • Diagnostic accuracy and specific procedures.
  • Patient satisfaction and patient care.  

Topics not covered in the guideline

  • Training in bronchoscopy (The BTS is producing separate guidance on training).
  • Advanced diagnostic and therapeutic FB.3 Rigid bronchoscopy.
  • FB used for intubation, percutaneous tracheostomy placements and intraoperative complications.
  • Paediatric FB.
  • FB performed under general anaesthetic.