We present the case of a 45-year-old woman, working as a silver polisher since 11 years, complaining of dyspnea on exertion and dry cough. Intensive diagnostic workup, including high-resolution CT scan of the chest and lung biopsy by VATS led to the diagnosis of pulmonary siderosis. Pulmonary siderosis is a benign, non-fibrotic type of pneumoconiosis caused by inhalation of iron oxide, which is generally asymptomatic (except in concurrent smoking or concurrent silicosis). Combination of relevant exposure and the typical findings on CT-imaging (centrilobular nodules without cranio-caudal gradient) usually strongly suggest the diagnosis, but this should always be discussed at a multidisciplinary consultation. This includes discussing whether to perform a lung biopsy for histological confirmation. Cessation of the causative exposure is the only-treatment one can take and then radiological features can improve and even disappear of time. Unfortunately, this treatment has an enormous impact on patient's life because it implies changing profession. Preventive measures can be taken by employers (respiratory equipment and ventilation). This case illustrates that physicians should stay vigilant about occupational exposures in clinical practice as well as the need for multidisciplinary consult in patients suspected of having interstitial lung disease.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-3
Number of pages3
JournalActa Clinica Belgica
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Jan 2020

    Research areas

  • Pulmonology, diffuse parenchymal lung disease, occupational lung disease, pneumoconiosis

ID: 49085509