Bronchiectasis due to lipid aspiration in childhood: clinical and pathological correlates

Ann Trop Paediatr. 1996 Mar;16(1):19-25. doi: 10.1080/02724936.1996.11747799.


We report the clinical and pathological features in six Arab children with bronchiectasis caused by ghee lipid aspiration. They all had a history of ghee administration followed by a history of chronic cough dating from early childhood. Chest radiographs showed consolidation/collapse of the right middle and left lower lobes in the majority, and bronchography and chest CT scan confirmed bronchiectasis. The children were treated medically, without any improvement, and five required surgery. The histology of the lung revealed dilated bronchi filled with vacuolated granular eosinophilic material and the peripheral lung tissue was mostly atelectatic with patchy lymphocytic bronchiolitis. Frozen sections of the lung tissue showed scattered lipogranulomas with fat-laden macrophages and fat droplets within peripheral and perivascular lymphatics. In communities where the traditional practice of force-feeding infants and children with ghee exists, it may be an important predisposing cause of bronchiectasis.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Bronchiectasis / diagnostic imaging
  • Bronchiectasis / etiology*
  • Bronchiectasis / pathology*
  • Bronchiectasis / therapy
  • Bronchography
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Dietary Fats / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Inhalation
  • Lung / diagnostic imaging
  • Lung / pathology
  • Male
  • Pneumonectomy
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Dietary Fats