JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Pulmonary complications of chemotherapy regimens containing bleomycin.

Twenty patients with pulmonary complications associated with combination chemotherapy regimens containing bleomycin were studied to determine common patterns of pulmonary radiographic abnormalities. All patients were receiving bleomycin on one of two different regimens of combination chemotherapy. Ten patients with non-Hodgkin lymphoma received a relatively low dose (22-64 mg total) and 10 patients with testicular cancer received a higher dose (360 mg total). The high-dose group showed subclinical radiographic lung toxicity changes in eight (80%) patients during and after therapy. Chronic pulmonary abnormalities were seen in nine (90%) patients in the high-dose group but in only three (30%) patients in the low-dose group. These was no significant difference in the pattern and distribution of lung infiltrates in these two groups. Infiltrates involving mainly the costophrenic triangle were seen in 18 (90%) patients; in six (33%) of these the changes were confined to the costophrenic triangles bilaterally and nearly symmetrically. Five (25%) patients had infiltrates at the periphery of the lungs. Elevation of the diaphragm was seen in 16 (80%) patients. A pleural reaction without gross effusion was seen in nine (45%) patients, of whom five (55%) demonstrated thickening of the interlobar fissures. Chronic lung changes were mostly confined to the bases in the form of failure of reexpansion of the costophrenic triangle (55%), persistent elevation of the diaphragm (35%), and a reticular meshwork of fibrosis at the costophrenic triangles (25%). Minimal lung disease was manifest as ground glass appearance at the lung bases and as fine, linear or reticulonodular densities that involved the costophrenic triangles.

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