Bronchoscopy is the primary procedure your MSK lung cancer doctor will perform to obtain a biopsy. A skilled pathologist will then examine under a microscope the tissue sample your doctor removes during the procedure in order to make a precise diagnosis.

During a bronchoscopy, you will first be put under anesthesia. Then, your doctor will place a small tube called a bronchoscope through the nose or mouth, down the throat, and into the bronchial passages, where small tools are used to remove some tissue.

Bronchoscopy is used mainly when your doctors can reach the growth from the airway. It can also be used if the suspicious growth is located just outside the bronchial tubes. Your doctor may need to use other biopsy methods, like needle biopsy, depending on the size of the growth or if it’s located in another area.