A bronchoscopic culture is a laboratory test used to isolate and identify organisms that cause infection in the lungs. In order to perform the culture a sample of lung tissue or secretion from the lung is needed. A bronchoscope (a thin, flexible fiberoptic tube) is often used to obtain the lung tissue sample. Evidence of infection such as abscesses, inflammation, or abnormal secretions may be observed during the procedure.
Review Date 10/14/2019
Updated by: Denis Hadjiliadis, MD, MHS, Paul F. Harron Jr. Associate Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.