FJF Herth, JT Annema, R Eberhardt, K Yasufuku, A Ernst, M Krasnik, RC Rintoul
J Clin Oncol
PURPOSE: To investigate the sensitivity and accuracy of endobronchial ultrasound-guided transbronchial needle aspiration (EBUS-TBNA) for restaging the mediastinum after induction chemotherapy in patients with non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC). PATIENTS AND METHODS: One hundred twenty-four consecutive patients with tissue-proven stage IIIA-N2 disease who were treated with induction chemotherapy and who had undergone mediastinal restaging by EBUS-TBNA were reviewed. On the basis of computed tomography, 58 patients were classified as having stable disease and 66 were judged to have had a partial response. All patients subsequently underwent thoracotomy with attempted curative resection and a lymph node dissection regardless of EBUS-TBNA findings. RESULTS: Persistent nodal metastases were detected by using EBUS-TBNA in 89 patients (72%). Of the 35 patients in whom no metastases were assessed by EBUS-TBNA, 28 were found to have residual stage IIIA-N2 disease at thoracotomy. The majority (91%) of these false negative results were due to nodal sampling error rather than detection error. Overall sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, negative predictive value, and diagnostic accuracy of EBUS-TBNA for mediastinal restaging after induction chemotherapy were 76%, 100%, 100%, 20%, and 77%, respectively. CONCLUSION: EBUS-TBNA is a sensitive, specific, accurate, and minimally invasive test for mediastinal restaging of patients with NSCLC. However, because of the low negative predictive value, tumor-negative findings should be confirmed by surgical staging before thoracotomy.