Bronchiolitis obliterans organising pneumonia as an initial manifestation of systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a rare and uncommon presentation. We describe a case of SLE presenting with shortness of breath, found to have pneumothorax, bilateral nodular infiltrates along with pleural effusions and pericardial effusion. Work-up suggested a diagnosis of active SLE with anaemia, thrombocytopenia, positive antinuclear antibodies (ANAs) and positive anti-double-stranded DNA. On retrospective review of patient records, from 8 years prior to presentation, lung biopsy histology consistent with bronchiolitis obliterans organising pneumonia with positive ANA serology was found, without any further autoimmune work-up. In our opinion, bronchiolitis obliterans organising pneumonia was the index presentation of SLE. Treatment with steroids and subsequent management with immunosuppressive therapy could have prevented subsequent hospitalisations. Prompt work-up for autoimmune diseases should be considered in patients with positive ANA and histological evidence of bronchiolitis obliterans organising pneumonia.
- systemic lupus erythematosus
- respiratory medicine
- interstitial lung disease
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Contributors SJ: Conception and design, acquisition of data, analysisand interpretation of data, drafting of the manuscript and/or critical revisionof the manuscript for important intellectual content. RH: Conception anddesign, acquisition of data, analysis and interpretation of data, and draftingof the manuscript. KJ and KC: Analysis and interpretation of data, drafting ofthe manuscript and critical revision of the manuscript for importantintellectual content.
Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.
Competing interests None declared.
Patient consent Obtained.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
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