High-resolution CT of patients with primary ciliary dyskinesia

AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2007 May;188(5):1232-8. doi: 10.2214/AJR.06.0965.


Objective: High-resolution CT is an important tool in the detection and management of bronchiectasis, but there is little information about high-resolution CT findings in primary ciliary dyskinesia (PCD). We analyzed all high-resolution CT studies of the chest available for a cohort of PCD patients to identify an associated pattern of high-resolution CT changes.

Materials and methods: High-resolution CT studies were available for 45 PCD patients from 42 families with ranges of age and disease severity. The images were assessed for severity and distribution of bronchiectasis, peribronchial thickening, mucous plugging, and other findings. A bronchiectasis severity score was calculated. CT findings were correlated with phenotypic findings, including situs type, ciliary ultrastructural defect, nasal level of nitric oxide, forced expiratory volume in 1 second, and microbiologic findings in the airways.

Results: Twenty-nine adults (mean age, 42 +/- 15 years; age range, 21-73 years) and 16 children (mean age, 8 +/- 4 years; age range, 1-14 years) were included; 26 (58%) of the patients were women or girls. Situs inversus totalis (38%) or heterotaxy (18%) was identified in 56% of the patients. A high (9%) prevalence of pectus excavatum was identified. High-resolution CT of all of the adult and 56% of the pediatric patients showed bronchiectasis in a predominantly middle and lower lobe distribution. The right middle lobe was most commonly involved. Bronchiectasis severity score correlated with older age and worse pulmonary function.

Conclusion: High-resolution CT shows that pulmonary disease related to PCD predominantly involves the middle and lower lobes of the lungs. In adults, high-resolution CT findings negative for bronchiectasis may have a role in excluding the diagnosis of PCD. Correlation of severity of disease on high-resolution CT with patient phenotype gives further insight into the diversity and natural history of PCD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Kartagener Syndrome / diagnostic imaging*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed*