Desquamative interstitial pneumonitis and diffuse alveolar damage in textile workers. Potential role of mycotoxins

Chest. 1995 Nov;108(5):1196-200. doi: 10.1378/chest.108.5.1196.


Five of 88 workers at a textile plant developed interstitial lung disease. Biopsy specimens from the three initial cases demonstrated desquamative interstitial pneumonitis and diffuse alveolar damage. Two of these patients developed hypoxemic respiratory failure despite high-dose corticosteroid therapy. A survey of the remaining textile workers (questionnaires, chest radiographs, and pulmonary function tests) revealed one new case. This patient, and one other with a compatible presentation, improved clinically upon leaving the workplace and did not require therapy. A comprehensive assessment of the work environment was performed in search of potentially toxic respirable agents. We propose that these cases represent desquamative interstitial pneumonitis-like reactions, occupationally related to aflatoxin inhalation.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Air Microbiology
  • Biopsy
  • Fusarium*
  • Humans
  • Lung / pathology
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / microbiology*
  • Lung Diseases, Fungal / pathology
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / microbiology*
  • Lung Diseases, Interstitial / pathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycotoxins*
  • Occupational Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Occupational Diseases / microbiology*
  • Occupational Diseases / pathology
  • Pulmonary Alveoli* / pathology
  • Radiography
  • Recurrence
  • Textiles*


  • Mycotoxins