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The non-resolving lung cavity: a case of pulmonary cystic echinococcosis
  1. Simon Mifsud1,
  2. Emma Louise Schembri1,
  3. Jonathan Gauci2,
  4. Adrian Mizzi3,
  5. Charles Mallia Azzopardi4,
  6. Josef Micallef2
  1. 1Department of Medicine, Mater Dei Hospital, Msida, Malta
  2. 2Department of Medicine, Respiratory Division, Mater Dei Hospital, Msida, Malta
  3. 3Department of Medical Imaging, Mater Dei Hospital, Msida, Malta
  4. 4Department of Medicine, Infectious Disease Division, Mater Dei Hospital, Msida, Malta
  1. Correspondence to Dr Simon Mifsud, mifsudsimon{at}


The authors report a case of a 20-year-old woman who was diagnosed with pulmonary cystic echinococcosis. She was admitted to hospital with a 1-week history of unresolving cough, coloured sputum with occasional haemoptysis and fever despite oral antibiotics. Radiology revealed a cavitating right lower lobe lung abscess. After 4 weeks of treatment, follow-up radiology showed incomplete resolution. Bronchoscopy revealed a white, avascular cystic lesion in the right lower lobe and serology testing for Echinococcus granulosus was positive. Repeat imaging eventually confirmed the cystic lesion with the 'air bubble'sign. A thorough travel history, a high index of clinical suspicion and close follow-up are essential in making a diagnosis of pulmonary cystic echinococcosis.

  • infectious diseases
  • tropical medicine (infectious disease)
  • pneumonia (infectious disease)
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  • Contributors SM, ELS and JG were responsible for literature review and manuscript preparation. AM, CMA and JM contributed towards editing and review of the final manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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

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