January 2017 Pulmonary Case of the Month
Sunday, January 1, 2017 at 8:00AM
Rick Robbins, M.D. in CT scan, bronchoscopy, chest x-ray, diffuse alveolar hemorrhage, echocardiogram, hemoptysis, mitral stenosis, mitral valve gradient, respiratory failure, ultrasound

Jamie Bering, MD

Lewis J. Wesselius, MD


Department of Pulmonary Medicine

Mayo Clinic Arizona

Scottsdale, AZ


History of Present Illness

The patient is a 53-year-old woman transferred for acute respiratory failure and hemoptysis. She has a prior history of antiphospholipid syndrome and recurrent diffuse alveolar hemorrhage (DAH). She was admitted to another hospital about 2 weeks prior to transfer with hypoxic respiratory failure which ultimately required intubation. Bronchoscopy revealed a bloody aspirate raising concerns for recurrent DAH. She was started on high-dose solumedrol and extubated after 4 days. One week later, her respiratory status decompensated and her chest x-ray showed worsening diffuse bilateral opacities concerning for recurrent DAH. She was transferred to the Mayo Clinic Arizona for further evaluation. Upon arrival, she required 50% FiO2 by face mask to maintain adequate oxygenation and was started on broad-spectrum antibiotics. Her corticosteroids were tapered to 20 mg prednisone daily.

Past Medical History, Social History and Family History

She has a history of a mitral valve replacement with a St. Jude’s mechanical mitral valve and was on chronic anticoagulation with warfarin. In addition, there was a history of moderate aortic stenosis with moderate aortic insufficiency.

She had a history of diffuse alveolar hemorrhage, antiphospholipid antibody syndrome and possible systemic lupus erythematosus.


Physical Examination



Her initial chest x-ray is shown in Figure 1.


Figure 1. Initial chest radiograph.

Which of the following best describes the chest x-ray? (Click on the correct answer to proceed to the second of four pages)

  1. Diffuse lung consolidation
  2. Previous median sternotomy
  3. Previous mitral valve replacement
  4. 1 and 3
  5. All of the above

Cite as: Bering J, Wesselius LJ. January 2017 pulmonary case of the month. Southwest J Pulm Crit Care. 2016;14(1):1-5. doi: https://doi.org/10.13175/swjpcc146-16 PDF

Article originally appeared on SOUTHWEST JOURNAL of PULMONARY & CRITICAL CARE (http://www.swjpcc.com/).
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