Are there characteristic alterations in lung tissue associated with Crohn's disease?

Pathol Res Pract. 1990 Aug;186(4):485-90. doi: 10.1016/s0344-0338(11)80468-1.


Two male patients aged 12 and 31 years suffered from Crohn's disease for more than six years and were treated with Cortison for more than four years. Surgical excision of parts of the terminal ileum was performed in both patients. They suffered from pulmonary symptoms as dyspnoea, shortness of breath and ventilation disturbances two years after operation. Wedge biopsies of the lungs revealed the following histomorphological findings: 1. Granulomatous interstitial lymphocyte infiltrates 2. Acute alveolitis with severe dysplasia of pneumocytes 3. Moderate interstitial fibrosis. Immunohistology performed in one case showed predominantly lambda chains expressed by lymphocytes associated with IgA and IgM. IgG was missing, furthermore kappa chains could not be detected. Macrophages contained endogenous lectins (sugar receptors) for fucose, maltose, and N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (glcNAc). No receptors specific for mannose, lactose, and heparin could be found. Pneumocytes did not bind the neoglycoproteins but were found to express HLA-DR receptors detectable by the monoclonal antibody LN 3 in dysplastic pneumocytes only. The histomorphological and immunohistochemical findings suggest that the analyzed alterations of lung tissue are related to the underlying disease of enteritis regionalis.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Crohn Disease / pathology*
  • Crohn Disease / surgery
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Lung / pathology*
  • Male