Autofluorescence bronchoscopy--a comparison of two systems (LIFE and D-Light)

Respiration. Jul-Aug 2003;70(4):395-8. doi: 10.1159/000072903.


Background: Autofluorescense (AF) bronchoscopy is an established method to detect dysplasia and carcinoma in situ (CIS). Several different systems are currently available.

Objectives: This study aimed to directly compare the LIFE system (Xillix Technologies, Vancouver, Canada) and the D-light system (Storz, Tuttlingen, Germany).

Methods: In a prospective study performed between May 1999 and October 2000, we examined patients with risk factors for lung cancer that underwent bronchoscopy with both (LIFE and D-light) systems in a crossover design. The findings were classified into normal, abnormal and suspicious lesions by independent investigators and then compared.

Results: This study comprised 332 patients (220 males, 112 females, mean age 62.7 years, range 40-85); 1,117 biopsies were studied (mean biopsy rate 3.4/patient). In 817 biopsies, mucosal areas were classified as normal with respect to control biopsy specimens, 113 as abnormal and 187 as suspicious using AF bronchoscopy. The histological examination showed normal tissue in 850 cases, in 55 cases scarring or inflammation, in 62 meta- or dysplasias, in 11 carcinomas in situ and in 127 invasive tumors. In only 5 cases, classifications were found to be different between the two systems (2 normal, 2 dysplasias, 1 invasive tumor). The mean time for the LIFE system examination amounted to 11.7 min (range 6.2-19.5) and for the D-light system to 7.4 min (range 4.3-11.9). This difference was statistically significant (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: Both systems yielded comparable results. The examination time was significantly shorter with the D-light system, which may be explained by the more comfortable handling and the direct switch between white light and AF imaging. Different trials using either methodology could be compared directly.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Bronchoscopy / methods*
  • Carcinoma in Situ / pathology*
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Female
  • Fluorescence*
  • Humans
  • Lung / pathology
  • Lung Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness
  • Prospective Studies
  • Respiratory Mucosa / pathology
  • Time Factors