Pulmonary infection

Last revised by Joachim Feger on 21 Aug 2021

Pulmonary infections are common and are caused by a wide range of organisms.


Micro-organisms responsible may enter the lung by three potential routes:

  1. via the tracheobronchial tree
    • most commonly due to inhalation of droplets of secretions from another infected human
    • environmental exposure e.g. fungal spores
  2. via the pulmonary vasculature
  3. via direct spread from infection in the mediastinum, chest wall, or upper abdomen

Pulmonary infections may also be divided according to macroscopic appearances into:

Alternatively, the causative agent may be used to categorize infections. Having said that, in many cases a particular agent may cause a number of radiographic and pathological appearances depending on the stage of the infection and on the immune status of the host. 

Please refer to the following articles for discussion of specific entities:


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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: pseumocystis pneumonia
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  • Case 2: round pneumonia
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  • Case 3: pulmonary abscess
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  • Case 4: atypical pneumonia
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