[Silent pulmonary shadows]

Zhonghua Jie He He Hu Xi Za Zhi. 2024 May 12;47(5):444-449. doi: 10.3760/cma.j.cn112147-20231103-00290.
[Article in Chinese]


An elderly woman with a 1-year history of pulmonary shadows was admitted because of intermittent cough and sputum production for 2 months. Chest computed tomography (CT) scans showed bilateral consolidations and ground-glass opacities, with areas of low attenuation inside consolidative opacities on the mediastinal window. Previous history of radiotherapy for nasopharyngeal carcinoma and long-term use of a compound menthol nasal drops provided were important clues to the diagnosis. CT scan-guided needle lung biopsy and bronchoalveolar lavage were performed, and lipid-laden macrophages were confirmed in both bronchoalveolar lavage and lung tissue. Final diagnosis of exogenous lipoid pneumonia was made on the basis of her risk factors for aspiration, history of oil exposure, and classic radiological and histopathological features. Symptoms improved after discontinuation of causative exposure. It is important for clinicians to raise awareness of exogenous lipoid pneumonia and other aspiration lung diseases.


Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • English Abstract

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung / pathology
  • Pneumonia, Lipid* / diagnosis
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed