Mediastinoscopy, in the skilled hands of a thoracic surgeon, is a safe, cosmetically accepted procedure with negligible complications, less than that reported in many series of scalene node biopsies.
It has the advantage of yielding a much higher rate of diagnostic tissue, in all instances over 90%. In the cases of tuberculosis it enabled an organism to be isolated and sensitivities obtained.
It has also revealed a group of cases with findings, a further study of which may increase our understanding, assessment and management of patients presenting with hilar and/or paratracheal lymphadenopathy.
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