What is it?

Bronchoscopy is a procedure that passes a soft flexible, fiberoptic tube through your nose or mouth into your throat, and down into your larynx (voice box) and trachea (windpipe). It is used to examine your bronchial air tubes.



Bronchoscopy is used to examine the inside of the trachea, bronchi, and lungs. It helps your doctor determine the cause of some of your symptoms (such as cough, shortness of breath, bleeding, and sputum production).

About the Procedure

The procedure is a day surgery procedure: you will come in and go home on the same day. You will be greeted by a nurse who will start an intravenous (IV). You will be given a local anesthetic to your nose or throat to prevent gagging, and light sedation. A flexible bronchoscope (telescope) will be passed through your nose or mouth into your throat, and down into your larynx and trachea to examine the inside of your lungs. Biopsies (samples) may be taken.

Before Your Bronchoscopy

  • DO NOT EAT OR DRINK ANYTHING, including water, after midnight the night before the procedure unless instructed otherwise by your surgeon.
  • Advise your surgeon if you are taking any blood thinners.
  • Leave jewellery and other valuables at home.

Inform your surgeon's office immediately if you are unable to keep your appointment!

Where to Register

  • You will need to register at the Endoscopy Unit (B2-220).


  • The procedure takes about 1 hour and is done in the Endoscopy Unit.
  • Plan on spending approximately 3 hours in hospital.


  • The procedure may be uncomfortable and may cause gagging and coughing, however, local anesthetics and sedation will be given as needed.
  • If biopsies are taken, slight bleeding may occur. This is usually temporary and will stop in a few hours.

After Your Bronchoscopy

  • After the procedure you will return to the Endoscopy Unit until you are ready to leave the hospital.
  • Your surgeon will come and speak to you following your procedure.

Family and Friends

  • Family and friends may wait in the Endoscopy waiting room, B2-220. 
  • Your surgeon will speak with them following your procedure.


  • There is minimal to no pain after the procedure.


  • There are no specific limitations. Your body is your best guide as to what you can do or feel like doing.


  • You must go home with either a friend or relative by private vehicle or by taxi, NOT by public transportation.

Follow-up Visit

  • Before you leave the hospital, your nurse will schedule a return appointment with your surgeon to discuss the results of the procedure if required.
  • If a biopsy has been taken, an appointment for the results will be made at least 14 days following the procedure when the results of the biopsy are complete.

Call your surgeon's office if:

  • You have any excess:
    • bleeding
    • coughing
    • pain
    • shortness of breath.
  • You have a temperature of 38.5°C  or 101.5°F.