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Home > Medical Services > Lung & Respiratory Care > Lung Tests & Treatments > Bronchial Thermoplasty for Asthma > What to Expect from Bronchial Thermoplasty
The BT procedure is performed at Mercy in an outpatient setting by Mercy Pulmonology Clinic's Eduardo Celis, MD, who is specially trained to perform bronchoscopy procedures and BT.
To schedule a consultation, call the clinic at (319) 221-8788.
Bronchial thermoplasty (BT) is performed by a lung specialist, called a pulmonologist. To ensure safety and optimal results every step of the way, BT is typically performed in three separate outpatient procedures, each scheduled three weeks apart. The first procedure treats the airways of the right lower lobe of the lungs; the second treats the airways of the left lower lobe; and the third procedure treats the airways in both upper lobes.
Doctors use a bronchoscope to work inside a patient’s lungs. This long, flexible tube has a camera on one end so doctors can see inside the lungs. The scope is inserted through the mouth or nose; no incisions are required. Patients are under sedation throughout the procedure and should not feel any discomfort other than occasional coughing. The specialist may also decide to do the procedure under general anesthesia, in which case the patient will be asleep during the entire procedure.
A catheter is inserted through a channel in the bronchoscope, and precisely controlled thermal energy is delivered through the catheter into the airways. This "heats up" the airway smooth muscle to around 140 degrees Fahrenheit, which is enough to destroy the smooth muscle and thus take away the ability of the airways to narrow.
After the procedure, you will be monitored for 2 to 4 hours and discharged on the same day. The treating physician will provide you with more details on what to expect during and after the procedure.