Using Electromagnetic Navigation Bronchoscopy (ENB), pulmonologists and thoracic surgeons can access peripheral lung lesions through a minimally invasive pathway, using a previous reformatted CT scan. ENB uses steerable catheters and electromagnetic navigation to provide simultaneous guidance and access to peripheral lesions for diagnosis, in virtually all non-operable patients. There is a 24% false-negative rate for all lung lesions, especially those < 2 cm, most likely due to motion and error in positioning between the CT and biopsy.
Lung lesions often have high uptake of the positron-emitting F-18 FDG compared to the normal lung tissue. The Atheron probe will locate the radioactive accumulation in order to further guide the biopsy process by extending the biopsy needle.
By embedding apositron detector into the biopsy needle of ENB in order to confirm its intra-lesional location due to increased uptake of F-18 FDG in the lesion, the yield of biopsy will be increased. Positrons travel just a few millimeters in lung tissue and even less in solid tissue; therefore, the positron detector only senses local sources of radioactivity and is insensitive to distant accumulations of radioactivity.