Bronchial foreign bodies (FB) in children are difficult to diagnose when there is no witness to the aspiration event. The experience with three-dimensional CT and virtual bronchoscopic reconstruction (3D-CTVB) was reviewed for the diagnosis of bronchial FB in pediatric patients in this study. A retrospective review of ten pediatric patients (M:F = 5:5) who underwent rigid bronchoscopy by one otolaryngologist for the impression of a bronchial FB, at a tertiary training hospital, from February 2006 to September 2010 is reported. All patients had a plain chest X-ray and 3D-CTVB. The physical, radiological and bronchoscopic findings of the patients were analyzed. The mean duration from the aspiration event to hospital evaluation was 7 days (0-21 days). Four patients (44%) had witnesses to the aspiration event. Hyperaeration of the affected lung was noted in nine patients (90%) on the plain chest X-ray. In all of the patients, the foreign body location, suspected on the preoperative 3D-CTVB, was consistent with the intra-operative bronchoscopic findings. All FBs were successfully removed by rigid bronchoscopy without any complications. In conclusion, the 3D-CTVB was a very safe and useful diagnostic modality for bronchial FBs. The findings of this study suggest that the 3D-CTVB should be considered for the diagnosis of all patients with suspected bronchial FBs.
- Bronchial foreign body
- Three-dimensional computed tomography
- Virtual bronchoscopy