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Antisynthetase syndrome (ASS) presenting as acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in a patient without myositis features
  1. Venkat Kiran Kanchustambham,
  2. Swetha Saladi,
  3. Sarah Mahmoudassaf,
  4. Setu Patolia
  1. St Louis University, St Louis, Missouri, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Setu Patolia, patoliask{at}


A woman aged 61 years presented to the emergency room with a 1-week history of dyspnoea on exertion and dry cough. X-ray of the chest showed diffuse interstitial opacities and was started on antibiotics and furosemide, and despite these measures, patient's respiratory status worsened, prompting endotracheal intubation. CT of the chest showed diffuse bilateral ground glass opacities and underwent bronchoscope with trans-bronchial biopsy that showed chronic bronchitis. Pt was empirically started on intravenous steroids due to concerns for interstitial lung disease (ILD). Autoimmune work up was sent and underwent video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery-guided biopsy of the lung that showed non-specific interstitial pattern with fibrosis. The patient was diagnosed as having antisynthetase syndrome with pulmonary involvement (ILD) as the cause of her acute respiratory failure. Azathioprine was started as steroid-sparing agent and was weaned off the ventilator to a tracheostomy collar and discharged to long-term rehabilitation centre.

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  • Contributors SP and VKK were involved in the patient care. SS and SM helped writing the case report.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.