Five whole bronchoalveolar lavages were performed in 2 patients with pulmonary alveolar proteinosis with continuous monitoring of mixed venous and arterial oxygen saturation. Hemodynamic parameters and gas-exchange status were measured during the different phases of the lavage. In the phase of filled lung, a significant increase of arterial partial pressure (PaO2) and arterial saturation of oxygen were observed, secondary to a decrease in the intrapulmonary shunt. The mean pulmonary arterial pressure, pulmonary vascular resistances and cardiac index were higher during the filling of the lung as compared to the controls. During the empty lung phase, although PaO2 decreased (without reaching statistical significance), due to an increase in the intrapulmonary shunt, the increase in cardiac output during this phase left the oxygen delivery (DO2) unchanged.