Lymphocytic Interstitial Pneumonia: Thin-Section CT Findings in 22 Patients

PURPOSE: To assess the thin-section computed tomographic (CT) findings of lymphocytic interstitial pneumonia.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study included 22 patients (five men, 17 women; age range, 24–83 years; mean age, 50 years) with biopsy-proved lymphocytic interstitial pneumonia. The CT scans were obtained by using 1–3-mm collimation and reconstructed by using a high-spatial-frequency algorithm.

RESULTS: The predominant abnormalities consisted of areas of ground-glass attenuation and poorly defined centrilobular nodules present in all 22 patients and subpleural small nodules seen in 19 patients. Other common findings included thickening of bronchovascular bundles (n = 19), interlobular septal thickening (n = 18), cystic airspaces (n = 15), and lymph node enlargement (n = 15). Less common findings included large nodules, emphysema, airspace consolidation, bronchiectasis, architectural distortion, honeycombing, and pleural thickening.

CONCLUSION: Lymphocytic interstitial pneumonia is characterized by the presence of ground-glass attenuation, poorly defined centrilobular nodules, and thickening of the interstitium along the lymphatic vessels. Lymph node enlargement is more common than previously recognized; it was seen in 68% of patients.


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Article History

Published in print: Aug 1999