Bronchial anthracofibrosis

Bronchial anthracofibrosis has been defined as luminal bronchial narrowing associated with anthracotic pigmentation on bronchoscopy without a relevant history of pneumoconiosis or smoking.

However, there is a potential relationship between bronchial anthracofibrosis and tuberculosis (TB) 1. Co-existence of TB and anthracofibrosis is high (~50%), and the CT findings are similar for the two conditions 3-4.

There is a preponderance for bronchial anthracofibrosis affecting women in their sixties.

Risk factors

Exposure to biomass fuel smoke 2,4.

Chronic productive cough, dyspnoea, haemoptysis, chest pain, fever and general weakness 1-2.

Pulmonary functional tests (PFTs) show an obstructive pattern in 50% of the patients affected, with small airway dysfunction varying according to the severity of bronchial stenosis.

Plain radiograph

Chest x-ray findings are non-specific 2:

CT
  • segmental collapse distal to the involved bronchi 1-2
    • right middle lobe is the most frequently involved 1
  • enlarged mediastinal or hilar lymph nodes adjacent to the involved bronchi or calcified nodes adjacent to the bronchi 1-2
  • bronchial narrowing accompanied by thickening of the wall or peribronchial cuffing 1-2
  • other findings: fibrotic bands, nodules, bronchiectasis
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Article Information

rID: 32576
System: Chest
Section: Pathology
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Inflammatory bronchial stenosis with anthracotic pigmentation

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    Case 1: bronchoscopy
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