Pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis: Blizzard of lung

Monaldi Arch Chest Dis. 2021 Jun 10;91(4). doi: 10.4081/monaldi.2021.1709.


Pulmonary alveolar microlithiasis (PAM) is a rare inherited disorder in which patients present with either nonspecific signs and symptoms or are asymptomatic. Clinical-radiological dissociation is a commonly seen feature of the disease. Majority of cases are diagnosed in second and third decade of life, although presentation in paediatric and elderly population is also reported. Pathognomonic radiological findings, with normal calcium and phosphate levels can confirm the diagnosis without the need of further investigations in large number of cases. A high index of suspicion and knowledge of the disease is of paramount importance as it has a wide range of presentation and variable course thus posing a diagnostic challenge. We present two cases of this rare disease in elderly females with distinct presentations although with similar and characteristic radiological findings along with a brief review of literature of the disease.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Calcinosis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Child
  • Female
  • Genetic Diseases, Inborn
  • Humans
  • Lung
  • Lung Diseases* / diagnostic imaging
  • Snow

Supplementary concepts

  • Pulmonary Alveolar Microlithiasis