Pulmonary sarcoidosis: CT assessment of lesion reversibility

Radiology. 1992 Feb;182(2):349-54. doi: 10.1148/radiology.182.2.1732948.


By comparing serial computed tomographic (CT) scans obtained when sarcoidosis was clinically active and after the onset of remission, an attempt was made to differentiate inflammatory from fibrotic lesions in the lungs of patients with sarcoidosis. Twenty patients with pulmonary infiltration seen on their chest radiographs were studied. For each patient, lesions found on the first CT scan were assessed by two observers as being decreased or increased on the second CT scan. Nodules (n = 8), irregularly marginated nodules (n = 5), and alveolar or pseudoalveolar consolidation (n = 5) always disappeared or clearly decreased. Septal lines (n = 10), nonseptal lines (n = 9), and lung distortion (n = 7) remained unchanged or increased. Some findings varied among patients: Micronodules (n = 9) and subpleural thickening (n = 5) disappeared or decreased in sarcoidosis of recent origin. Many findings of pulmonary infiltration seen on the first CT scan can be considered expressions of either inflammatory (reversible CT findings) or fibrotic (irreversible CT findings) lesions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lung Diseases / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sarcoidosis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Sarcoidosis / pathology
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed*