Invasive pulmonary aspergillosis in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease: an emerging fungal pathogen

Clin Microbiol Infect. 2005 Jun;11(6):427-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1469-0691.2005.01143.x.


Acute invasive pulmonary aspergillosis occurs predominantly in immunocompromised hosts, with increasing numbers of cases of invasive aspergillosis among patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) being reported. Among 13 cases of invasive aspergillosis diagnosed in COPD patients admitted to the intensive care unit with acute respiratory distress, the only risk factor for invasive fungal infection was corticosteroid treatment. Invasive aspergillosis should be suspected in COPD patients receiving steroid treatment who have extensive pulmonary infiltrates. Survival depends on rapid diagnosis and early appropriate treatment. A decrease or interruption of steroid treatment should be considered as part of the overall therapeutic strategy.

Publication types

  • Editorial
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aspergillosis / diagnosis
  • Aspergillosis / etiology*
  • Aspergillosis / therapy
  • Aspergillus fumigatus / isolation & purification
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / microbiology
  • Glucocorticoids / therapeutic use
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / diagnosis
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / etiology*
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / therapy
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / complications*
  • Pulmonary Disease, Chronic Obstructive / drug therapy
  • Risk Factors
  • Withholding Treatment


  • Glucocorticoids