Author(s): Elsasser S, Dalquen P, Soler M, Perruchoud AP, Elsasser S, Dalquen P, Soler M, Perruchoud AP
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Abstract A 71-year-old man with a long-standing history of rheumatoid arthritis required methotrexate treatment since 1986, with a total dose of 210 mg. In April 1987, before arthroplastic surgery, methotrexate was discontinued. Four weeks later a syndrome of fever, dry cough, shortness of breath, and diffuse air-space consolidations on the chest radiograph evolved. An antibiotic therapy had no beneficial effect, and a bronchoscopy yielded no pathogens. An open lung biopsy led to the diagnosis of methotrexate-induced pneumonitis. This is the first report of a case where methotrexate-induced pneumonitis developed several weeks after cessation of the treatment. Methotrexate can cause four types of pulmonary adverse reactions: pneumonitis, pulmonary edema, pulmonary fibrosis, and pleuritis. Possible pathogenetic mechanisms, symptoms, treatment, and prognosis are discussed.
This article was published in Am Rev Respir Dis
and referenced in Journal of Drug Metabolism & Toxicology