Drug-induced lung disease

Drug-induced lung disease can result from a number of agents and may have a myriad of presentations, ranging from an adult respiratory distress syndrome type picture to established pulmonary fibrosis.

Due to this, it can be extremely difficult to pinpoint the offending agent on imaging appearances alone and correlation with the medical history is mandatory. 


Chemotherapy agents

These can give several patterns of disease which include 1,5 :

Example agents include:

Immunosuppressive agents
Immunotherapy agents

Immune checkpoint inhibitor therapy-related pneumonitis / immune-mediated pneumonitis usually happens between 8 to 14 weeks after the start of treatment 13. Examples of agents include:

Cardiovascular agents
Antibiotic agents

Can also give similar patterns to that of chemotherapeutic agents. 
Examples include:

Anti-inflammatory agents
Recreational drugs

Accidental inhalation or ingestion of various agents:


Article information

rID: 10797
System: Chest
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Drug related pneumonitis
  • Drug related pneumonitides
  • Drug induced pneumonitis
  • Drug induced pneumonitides
  • Toxic pneumonitis
  • Drug induced lung disease
  • Drug induced interstitial lung disease
  • Drug induced pulmonary disease
  • Drug-induced lung injury
  • Drug induced interstitial pulmonary disease

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Cases and figures

  • Case 1: interstitial fibrosis from ABVD chemotherapy
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  • Case 2: amiodarone lung
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  • Case 3: Rituximab-induced interstitial lung disease
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  • Case 4: immunotherapy-induced pneumonitis
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  • Case 5: probable gemcitabine lung toxicity
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