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NCI Dictionary of Cancer Terms


mediastinoscopy  listen  (MEE-dee-uh-sty-NOS-koh-pee)

  A procedure in which a mediastinoscope is used to examine the organs in the area between the lungs and nearby lymph nodes. A mediastinoscope is a thin, tube-like instrument with a light and a lens for viewing. It may also have a tool to remove tissue to be checked under a microscope for signs of disease. The mediastinoscope is inserted into the chest through an incision above the breastbone. This procedure is usually done to get a tissue sample from the lymph nodes on the right side of the chest.

Enlarge
Mediastinoscopy; shows mediastinoscope with light and lens inserted into
the chest through an incision above the breastbone. Drawing shows right
and left lungs, trachea, and lymph nodes. Inset shows anterior
mediastinotomy (Chamberlain procedure) with incision beside the
breastbone.