Video bronchoscopy equipment, used to examine patients’ airways for abnormalities, has been installed at Government Stanley Medical College Hospital.

A renovated and expanded surgery ward-500 under the Chief Minister’s comprehensive health insurance scheme (CMCHIS) is another of the new facilities here, which were inaugurated by health minister K.C. Veeramani on Thursday.

Video bronchoscopy, which is done with a flexible bronchoscope, is a technique of visualising the inside of the airways for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. An instrument is inserted into the airways, usually through the nose or mouth.

The practitioner can examine the patient’s airways for abnormalities such as foreign bodies, bleeding, tumours or inflammation and also take tissue specimens from inside the lungs for testing for different disorders.

Unlike a rigid bronchoscope, a flexible bronchoscope is longer and thinner. It has a fibre optic system that transmits an image from the tip of the instrument to an eyepiece or video camera at the other end.

The procedure causes less discomfort for the patient than a rigid bronchoscopy, and is performed under moderate sedation.

Used for therapeutic purposes, it helps in removing secretions, blood or foreign objects lodged in the airway, laser resection of tumours, stent insertion and tracheal intubation of patients with difficult airways.