The Luftsichel sign is seen in some cases of left upper lobe collapse and refers to the frontal chest radiographic appearance due to hyperinflation of the superior segment of the left lower lobe interposing itself between the mediastinum and the collapsed left upper lobe.
In many cases of left upper lobe collapse the anterior parts of the aortic arch, and thus the aortic knuckle, are abutted by collapsed lung and thus the normal silhouette is lost. In some case the apical (superior) segment of the left lower lobe is hyperinflated and becomes interposed between the collapsed lung and the adjacent aortic arch. In such cases the aortic knuckle silhouette remains visible. The collapsed left upper lobe is thus displaced laterally away from the mediastinum.
It is derived from the German words luft = air, sichel = sickle, literally describes an ‘air crescent’ which may be seen between the aortic arch and the medial border of the collapse
This article is in need of some more references!
You can make a difference to Radiopaedia.org by adding some relevant ones.
- 1. Grainger RG, ADAM A, Dixon AK. GRAINGER & ALLISONS DIAGNOSTIC RADIOLOGY. Churchill Livingstone. (2007) ISBN:0443101639. Read it at Google Books - Find it at Amazon
- 2. Blankenbaker DG. The luftsichel sign. Radiology. 1998;208 (2): 319-20. Radiology (citation) - Pubmed citation