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The purpose and advantage of seeing inside the larynx is to detect tumors, foreign bodies, nerve or structural injury, or other abnormalities. Two methods allow the larynx to be seen directly during the examination. In one, a flexible tube with a fiber-optic device is threaded through the nasal passage and down into the throat. The other method uses a rigid viewing tube passed directly from the mouth, through the throat, into the larynx. A light and lens affixed to the endoscope are used in both methods. The endoscopic tube may also be equipped to suction debris or remove material for biopsy. Bronchoscopy is a similar, but more extensive procedure in which the tube is continued through the larynx, down into the trachea and bronchi.

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