Acute exogenous lipoid pneumonia

Case contributed by Dr Eleonora Tricarico


Cough and dyspnea.

Patient Data

Age: 65 years
Gender: Female

CT Chest

Bilateral ground-glass opacities, consolidation of right lower lobe and right pleural effusion.

Case Discussion

Exogenous lipoid pneumonia is a condition caused by the inhalation of fat-like material of animal, vegetable or mineral origin.

There are cases described in the literature related to the administration of liquid paraffin for the treatment of chronic constipation. Liquid paraffin could be aspirated either spontaneously, or aspiration could be facilitated by the presence of gastroesophageal reflux or psychiatric illness.

The patient in our case had a mild intellectual disability, disorders of swallowing and her relatives reported that she had taken unspecified drops containing paraffin.

Acute exogenous lipoid pneumonia typically manifests as cough, dyspnea, and low-grade fever.

Generally, supportive therapy allows the resolution of symptoms.

The opacities, ground glass and consolidative, are bilateral and predominantly involve the middle and lower lobes.

Exogenous lipoid pneumonia can also manifest as geographic ground-glass attenuation associated with interlobular septal thickening within areas of ground-glass attenuation: "crazy paving" pattern.

PlayAdd to Share

Case information

rID: 42415
Published: 22nd Jan 2016
Last edited: 19th Dec 2020
System: Chest
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

Updating… Please wait.

 Unable to process the form. Check for errors and try again.

 Thank you for updating your details.