Bronchoscopy is the examination of the bronchi (the main airways of the lungs) using a flexible tube (bronchoscope) inserted into the nose or mouth. Bronchoscopy is performed in a procedure room or operating theater and helps to evaluate and diagnose lung problems, assess blockages, and, with the aid of miniscule tools, obtain samples of tissue or fluid and help remove a foreign body. Prior medication allows the patient to be relaxed during the procedure. The bronchoscope has a light and a tiny camera to allow the lung surgeon or pulmonologist to view inside the chest and take pictures. If there is excess bleeding or a large object stuck in the throat, the doctor may need to use a rigid instead of flexible tube. A rigid tube is wider and requires that a hospital setting be utilized. Bronchoscopy also can be used to treat lung problems, such as with the insertion of an airway stent or in bronchial thermoplasty. Newer types of flexible bronchoscopy include ones that use ultrasound, CT, or fluorescence technology to create pictures of the airways.


UAB Pulmonary Services is ranked among the best programs of its kind in the nation, and our physicians are consistently listed among the Best Doctors in America for respiratory disease. We serve patients at our main campus and also at our convenient neighborhood clinics in Hoover and Gardendale.

Most UAB Pulmonary Services doctors are triple board-certified in internal medicine, critical care, and pulmonary medicine. They serve on national boards and specialty organizations, speak at national conferences, publish in scientific and medical journals, and help conduct research that is recognized nationally and internationally. Our physicians are continually seeking new ways to treat lung disease and improve the techniques and care for transplant patients while contributing to the body of knowledge about lung disease. We have the only nationally accredited Sleep Medicine Fellowship Training Program in Alabama.

Many UAB Pulmonary Services physicians carry out research funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to gain a better understanding of lung disease and its treatments or help turn new discoveries into therapies. Our physicians have served as presidents of many national societies, including the American College of Chest Physicians, the Association of Subspecialty Professors, and the Association of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine Program Directors. The excellence of our clinical and research programs has been recognized with our membership in the NIH-funded COPD and IPF Clinical Research networks (COPDnet and IPFnet, respectively), as well as the American Lung Association's Asthma Clinical Research Network and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Therapeutics Development Network. The World Association of Sarcoidosis and Other Granulomatous Disorders (WASOG) and the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR) have recognized UAB as a Sarcoidosis Center of Excellence.








UAB is an active participant in research and clinical trials. We encourage you to speak to your physician about research and clinical trial options and browse the link below for more information.

View Clinical Trials