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Successful lung transplantation for talcosis secondary to intravenous abuse of oral drug

Authors Shlomi D, Shitrit D, Bendayan D, Sahar G, Shechtman Y, Kramer MR, Dekel Y

Published 6 June 2008 Volume 2008:3(2) Pages 327—330


Dekel Shlomi1, David Shitrit1, Daniele Bendayan1, Gidon Sahar2, Yitshak Shechtman3, Mordechai R Kramer1

1Pulmonary Institute, Departments of 2Cardiothoracic Surgery and 3Pathology, Rabin Medical Center, Beilinson Campus, Petah Tiqwa, and Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv, Israel

Abstract: Talcosis due to intravenous injection of oral drugs can cause severe pulmonary disease with progressive dyspnea even when drug use is discontinued. We describe a 54-yearold woman with severe emphysema who underwent left lung transplantation. The patient had a remote history of intravenous injection of crushed methylphenidate (Ritalin) tablets. Chest computed tomography showed severe emphysematous changes, more prominent in the lower lobes. Microscopic examination of the extracted lung demonstrated multinucleated giant cells with birefringent crystals, compatible with talcosis. At follow-up, daily symptoms were completely alleviated and lung function was good. We recommend that lung transplantation be considered as a viable option in the treatment of talcosis.

Keywords: methylphenidate (Ritalin), emphysema

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