Pulmonology & Respiratory Care
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At Indiana University Health, our physicians help you breathe easier so you can live well. Our physicians have undergone years of training to treat complex pulmonary diseases.
Our multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals includes pulmonologists (physicians who diagnose and treat lung conditions and diseases) critical care physicians, sleep medicine physicians, respiratory therapists and nurses.
Our team works closely with you to develop a personalized treatment solution for your respiratory problems including education, lifestyle changes and medicines. The strategies we develop help manage chronic lung conditions in ways that fit your individual lifestyle. Our physicians provide comprehensive care both in and outside of the hospital. We treat a wide range of conditions from asthma to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) to cystic fibrosis, with advanced treatments and clinical trials available through our partnership with the Indiana University School of Medicine. Our research keeps us on the forefront of medicine, developing new technologies and innovations in patient care.
Pulmonologists and respiratory care experts at Indiana University Health University Hospital offer comprehensive and coordinated care for patients with a wide range of pulmonary issues. Many treatments offered can be done on an outpatient basis, allowing patients to go home the same day with the assistance of a family member or friend as a driver.
Our physicians lead and participate in research and clinical studies to develop new bronchoscopy and interventional pulmonology technology. These medical developments can lead to new treatment options that will improve the lives of patients.
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The team at IU Health University Hospital performs standard diagnostic and therapeutic bronchoscopy procedures. Our services include removal of foreign bodies, bronchoalveolar lavage, endo- and transbronchial forceps biopsy, endo- and transbronchial needle aspiration, brush biopsy and blood clot removal.
Endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS) uses ultrasound to locate targets that are not visible to the eye with a bronchoscope alone. This allows pulmonologists to more accurately find the target for biopsy, increasing the yield for the procedure. IU Health physicians may use EBUS technology for patients with an abnormal growth, tumor or large lymph node next to the airway.
Electromagnetic navigation is a technique that IU Health University Hospital physicians use for increased accuracy when accessing a lesion that needs to be biopsied. A software program is used to map out the target on a patient’s computed tomography (CT) scan to develop a pathway for the physicians to follow.
Autofluorescence is used in the larger airways to detect cancerous and pre-cancerous cells before a normal bronchoscopy can detect changes. This technology measures changes in the wavelength of light to detect lesions in airways and can be completed during a traditional bronchoscopy.
Balloon dilatation can be used when the airway is narrowed due to a wide variety of conditions causing shortness of breath. During this procedure, physicians at IU Health University Hospital place a deflated balloon into the airway and then inflate it to open the narrowed airway.
Some treatment plans may require a physician to place a stent (small mesh tube covered with a biocompatible material) in an airway using a bronchoscope. A stent may be placed in conjunction with a balloon to keep an airway open for easier breathing or could be used to close a hole in the lung or esophagus.
Argon plasma coagulation (APC) is used to destroy tumors that are blocking the windpipe and causing shortness of breath. This procedure uses a probe to discharge an ionized argon gas onto a tumor to minimize its size. The depth of the penetration is very limited, resulting in less collateral damage. Physicians at IU Health also use APC to cauterize a bleeding tumor or lesion to temporarily control bleeding and reduce the risk of a patient coughing up blood.
Cryotherapy is the use of cold to destroy and remove abnormal cells. Physicians at IU Health University Hospital often use cryotherapy in conjunction with argon plasma coagulation to remove large sections of tissue that are blocking the airway or are precancerous.
Physicians use an endoscope to place endobronchial valves to treat a pneumothorax (a collapsed lung) that fails to heal on its own. Once the pneumothorax is healed, the valves are removed.
Pleural catheters are used to help minimize the effects of a pleural effusion (excessive fluid around the lung). Large amounts of fluid in the chest cavity compress the lung and cause shortness of breath. A pleural catheter is a drainage system that, following proper education and training, allows the patient to drain the fluid on their own. Pleural catheter placement is generally an outpatient procedure requiring a local anesthetic.