Pulmonary actinomycosis in fine needle aspiration cytology

J Cytol. 2009 Apr;26(2):94-6. doi: 10.4103/0970-9371.55233.


Pulmonary actinomycosis is a rare bacterial lung disease caused by one of two types of bacteria, Actinomyces or Propioni. Pulmonary actinomycosis in the lung causes lung cavities, lung nodules, and pleural effusion. We report here a case of pulmonary actinomycosis that was diagnosed by fine needle aspiration cytology (FNAC). A 45 year-old male with a history of smoking and alcohol abuse, presented with complaints of cough with hemoptysis, right-sided chest pain, and fever of two months' duration. A chest radiograph and computed tomography (CT) of the thorax showed a right upper lobe mass lesion with hilar lymphadenopathy. CT-guided FNAC revealed colonies of Actinomyces surrounded by polymorphs. The disease is commonly confused with other chronic suppurative lung diseases and malignancy. An early diagnosis by FNAC prevents difficulties in the management of the disease, as well as considerable physiological and physical morbidity, including unwarranted surgery.

Keywords: Actinomycosis; guided fine needle aspiration cytology; pulmonary.

Publication types

  • Case Reports