Interstitial lung diseases after hematopoietic stem cell transplantation: New pattern of lung chronic graft-versus-host disease?

Bone Marrow Transplant. 2023 Jan;58(1):87-93. doi: 10.1038/s41409-022-01859-4. Epub 2022 Oct 29.


Bronchiolitis obliterans syndrome (BOS) after allogeneic HSCT is the only formally recognized manifestation of lung chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD). Other lung complications were reported, including interstitial lung diseases (ILDs). Whether ILDs belong to the spectrum of lung cGVHD remains unknown. We compared characteristics and specific risk factors for both ILD and BOS. Data collected from consecutive patients diagnosed with ILD or BOS from 1981-2019 were analyzed. The strength of the association between patient characteristics and ILD occurrence was measured via odds ratios estimated from univariable logistic models. Multivariable models allowed us to handle potential confounding variables. Overall survival (OS) was estimated using the Kaplan-Meier method. 238 patients were included: 79 with ILD and 159 with BOS. At diagnosis, FEV1 was lower in patients with BOS compared to patients with ILD, while DLCO was lower in ILD. 84% of ILD patients received systemic corticosteroids, leading to improved CT scans and pulmonary function, whereas most BOS patients were treated by inhaled corticosteroids, with lung-function stabilization. In the multivariable analysis, prior thoracic irradiation and absence of prior treatment with prednisone were associated with ILD. OS was similar, even if hematological relapse was more frequent in the ILD group. Both complications occurred mainly in patients with GVHD history.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones / therapeutic use
  • Bronchiolitis Obliterans Syndrome*
  • Bronchiolitis Obliterans* / diagnosis
  • Bronchiolitis Obliterans* / etiology
  • Graft vs Host Disease* / therapy
  • Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation* / adverse effects
  • Humans
  • Lung
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial* / complications
  • Lung Transplantation* / adverse effects
  • Retrospective Studies


  • Adrenal Cortex Hormones