Home Care Instructions After Bronchoscopy
- You will need to rest one hour or more in the recovery room before leaving the clinic. A chest x-ray may also be taken.
- You will not be able to eat or drink for one hour after the exam. This will allow time for the anesthetic to wear off in your throat. Then, you may resume your previous diet.
- You MUST have someone drive you home from the clinic. It will be unsafe for you to drive. The medications take up to 24 hours to completely clear out of your system. You may not feel completely back to normal until the next morning. You should NOT drive the day of your bronchoscopy. Do not make any important decisions on this day.
- Do not drink alcohol or take tranquilizers for 8 hours, or sleeping pills after the procedure. Do not use hazardous machinery either.
If you have any biopsies or washings taken, those results will not be available for 24-48 hours. The doctor will either talk to you after the exam, call you in a couple of days with the results, or she/he will talk to your referring physician.
- You may notice a mild soreness in your throat. It should only last a day. You may wish to gargle with lightly salted warm water or suck on hard candy.
- Sometimes redness, warmth or soreness occurs at the intravenous (IV) site. This can be relieved by applying a warm wet washcloth for 10 minutes four times a day. Call your doctor or nurse if this does not get better in 1-2 days or if it gets worse.
- You may resume your routine medications unless you are instructed otherwise. Please check with the doctor after the exam to see if it is okay to resume taking aspirin, aspirin-like medications, or a blood thinner.
- If biopsies were taken, you may cough up a few streaks or tiny clots of blood. This should not last longer than the next morning. If it does, call your doctor.
Call Your Home Doctor, or Go to Nearest Emergency Room If:
- The amount of blood you are coughing up becomes excessive
- Coughing becomes excessive
- Your develop chest pains or shortness of breath
(Reference: University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority. http://www.uwhealth.com)