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Chest ; 162(4):A2006-A2007, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2060886
SESSION TITLE Occupational and Environmental Lung Disease Case Posters SESSION TYPE Case Report Posters PRESENTED ON 10/17/2022 1215 pm - 0115 pm


We describe a case of acute progression of chronic hypersensitivity pneumonitis (HP) in an adult, previously misdiagnosed as COPD for 13 years due to severe emphysematous changes seen on imaging. He was also found to have acutely worsened disease as a result of Covid-19. CASE PRESENTATION A 64-year-old male presented to the pulmonary clinic with dyspnea on minimal exertion. He reported respiratory complaints for 13 years, treated with 2 L/min of oxygen overnight, and budesonide-formoterol and tiotropium inhalers. These complaints were previously associated with brief occupational mold exposure and possible COPD. His respiratory distress worsened one year ago when he was hospitalized for Covid-19. On discharge, his oxygen requirement had increased to 6 L/min. CT chest showed air-trapping in the mid-zones bilaterally, mosaic attenuation, and peri-bronchial thickening. PFTs showed an FEV1 33% and FVC 55% of predicted, consistent with severe obstruction and reduction in lung volume. As the patient was a lifetime non-smoker, alternative diagnoses were pursued. Alpha-1 antitrypsin levels and immunologic testing, including scleroderma and myositis panels, were within normal limits. Positive findings included CCP IgG/IgA antibodies at 96 units and HP panel positive for pigeon serum antibodies. Prompted by this testing, the patient revealed that he had parakeets in his home for the past 15 years. He also reported significant symptom improvement on occasions that he took a course of steroids. Based on these findings, a diagnosis of chronic fibrotic hypersensitivity pneumonitis with bronchiolitis obliterans was considered. The patient's severe airflow obstruction and respiratory failure precluded surgical lung biopsy. Empiric management was initiated with 30 mg of prednisone daily with a slow taper and instruction to eliminate exposure to exotic birds.


HP is commonly caused by inhalation of and sensitization to an aerosolized environmental antigen;a common subtype is bird fancier's lung due to repetitive exposure of avian antigen. Continuous antigen exposure increases the risk for development of fibrosis, which was also seen in our patient. The most commonly described radiologic findings in HP are ground-glass opacities, ill-defined centrilobular nodules, and focal areas of air trapping resulting in mosaic attenuation and fibrosis. More than 20% lymphocytosis on bronchoalveolar lavage is also a sensitive tool in detecting alveolitis. The relationship between Covid-19 and disease progression in HP is not well studied.


Chronic hypersensitivity pneumonitis from avian antigens, or Bird fancier's lung, can present with severe emphysematous changes on CT imaging, along with obstructive pattern of PFTs. This should be an important differential, especially in patients who are non-smokers. Covid-19 causes disease progression in HP, this relationship needs to be further explored. Reference #1 Funke M., Fellrath J.-M. Hypersensitivity pneumonitis secondary to lovebirds a new cause of bird fancier's disease. Eur. Respir. J. 2008;32517–521. DOI 10.1183/09031936.00108507 Reference #2 Pereira C., Gimenez A., Kuranishi L., Storrer K. Chronic hypersensitivity pneumonitis. J. Asthma Allergy. 2016;9171–181. DOI 10.2147/JAA.S81540 Reference #3 C.S. Glazer, C.S. Rose, D.A. Lynch Clinical and radiologic manifestations of hypersensitivity pneumonitis J. Thorac. Imag., 17 (4) (2002), pp. 261-272. DOI 10.1097/00005382-200210000-00003 Morell F, Roger A, Reyes L, Cruz MJ, Murio C, Muñoz X Bird fancier's lung a series of 86 patients. Medicine (Baltimore). 2008;87(2)110-130. DOI 10.1097/MD.0b013e31816d1dda DISCLOSURES No relevant relationships by Momina Amjad No relevant relationships by Amit Chopra No relevant relationships by Rafeh Safdar

Full text: Available Collection: Databases of international organizations Database: EMBASE Type of study: Diagnostic study / Prognostic study Language: English Journal: Chest Year: 2022 Document Type: Article





Full text: Available Collection: Databases of international organizations Database: EMBASE Type of study: Diagnostic study / Prognostic study Language: English Journal: Chest Year: 2022 Document Type: Article