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HOME > Acute Crit Care > Volume 28(1); 2013 > Article
Case Report Airway Obstruction and Respiratory Failure Due to Aspergillus Tracheobronchitis
Yousang Ko, So Yeon Lim, Gee Young Suh, Kyeongman Jeon, Seo Goo Han

1Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
2Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine, Osan Hankook Hospital, Osan, Korea.
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Invasive aspergillosis is a serious threat and a leading cause of death in immunocompromised patients. Aspergillus tracheobronchitis is an infrequent but severe form of invasive pulmonary aspergillos in which the fungal infection is entirely or predominantly confined to the tracheobronchial tree. We report an extraordinary case of acute airway obstruction and respiratory failure due to Aspergillus tracheobronchitis in an immunocompromised patient. Fiberoptic bronchoscopy revealed extensive obstruction of both the main and lobar bronchus with yellowish nodules strongly adhered to the bronchial wall; both histologic examination and culture of these nodules revealed Aspergillus fumigatus. Even with early detection of an intraluminal growth of Aspergillus and prompt institution of antifungal therapy, the patient died of refractory hypoxemia a few days later. This report shows that Aspergillus tracheobronchitis should be considered in immunocompromised patients with suspected lung infection even when the main radiographic finding is atelectasis.

ACC : Acute and Critical Care