Respiratory disease is common in captive and wild cetaceans. Bronchoscopy may permit early diagnosis of respiratory disease in dolphins and porpoises. Refinement of cetacean bronchoscopy requires development of a nomenclature system to facilitate description of the anatomic site at which lesions occur. A standard bronchoscopic nomenclature also permits serial evaluations of lesions and enhances communication between veterinarians. In this project, we adapted the bronchoscopic nomenclature devised by Amis and McKiernan for the dog and horse to the harbor porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). Silastic and air-dried models of the bronchial tree of the harbor porpoise were made to illustrate the anatomy and devise the nomenclature. Bronchial anatomy was consistent among the four porpoise lungs studied. The Amis and McKiernan nomenclature was readily adaptable to the harbor porpoise lung with minor modifications and may be useful for cetacean bronchoscopy.
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Vol. 32 • No. 2