Introduction: Lung lesions and undiagnosed mesothorax lymphadenopathy is an issue that several doctors face in the everyday clinical practice. PET-CT and CT of the thorax are usually the first examinations to identify characteristics of the lesions before biopsy. Patients and Methods: We performed a retrospective study with 450 patients that had EBUS-TBNA with 22G, Upgraded 22G and 19G needles with and without PET-CT in order to identify the cost effeteness of performing EBUS-TBNA before or after PET-CT. All centers used the same PET-CT equipment and EBUS-TBNA system. Three types of needle were used for the endoscopy in order to identify similarities and differences for the cost-effectiveness. The costs in every center for every examination and materials were the same. Results: There were more block slices for 19G>22Gupgraded>21G>22G and there was cost-effectiveness when in general PET-CT was performed prior to biopsy of any lesion. 19G needle was more effective for lymphomas, while 22Gupgraded and 21G needles were more cost-effective when used for smaller lesions for primary lung cancer of metastatic disease. Conclusions: We have been using PET-CT and EBUS-TBNA in the everyday clinical practice according to the current guidelines for initial disease staging and re-staging. However; we can also use both in a cost effective method based on the initial radiologic findings.
Keywords: 19G needle; 22G needle; CT; EBUS-TBNA; Mesothorax; PET-CT; lung cancer; lymphoma.
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