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Lipoid pneumonia

Case contributed by Dr Eric F Greif


Chronic cough.

Patient Data

Age: 55 years
Gender: Male

There are bibasilar infiltrates greater on left. Blunting of the left costophrenic angle suggest a small left pleural effusion. 


There are bilateral low-attenuation consolidations with greatest involvement of the left lung. Opacification of the left mainstem bronchus consistent with mucous plugging or aspiration. Small bilateral pleural effusions, greater on left with some loculation. Volume loss of the left hemithorax. Findings are typical for lipoid pneumonia with chronic changes. 

Case Discussion

The patient had a long history of constipation and ingested mineral oil for its known laxative effect.  He presented to the emergency room with chronic cough and shortness of breath for 6 months. Unaware, he may have aspirated the mineral oil at some time during his self treatment.

On follow up the radiographs demonstrates chronic infiltrates and fibrotic changes particularly in the left lung. (not shown)

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Case information

rID: 27371
Published: 31st Jan 2014
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
System: Chest
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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