Article Text

Reminder of important clinical lesson
Pulmonary actinomycosis: the great masquerader
  1. Hussam Elkambergy1,
  2. Farzan Irani1,
  3. Kelechi Okoli1,
  4. Raheel Jamal2
  1. 1
    St Vincent Mercy Medical Center, Internal Medicine, Toledo, Ohio, 43608, USA
  2. 2
    St Vincent Mercy Medical Center, Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine, Toledo, Ohio, 43608, USA
  1. kambergy{at}


Actinomycosis is a rare but treatable disease. Thoracic manifestations are varied and can mimic malignancy or tuberculosis. We report the case of a 54-year-old man who presented with a persistent cough and radiological evidence of right upper lobe lung mass. Conventional computed tomography guided biopsy and bronchoscopy proved to be non-diagnostic. Thoracotomy and histopathologic examination of the tissue confirmed actinomycosis infection. Excellent clinical and radiologic responses were noted following treatment with penicillin V. Despite a high clinical suspicion, the diagnosis can prove to be challenging.

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  • Competing interests: None.

  • Patient consent: Patient/guardian consent was obtained for publication