A 70-year-old woman with lung metastases from a breast cancer presented with worsening cough and dyspnoea. She recently had a pleurodesis for a malignant pleural effusion. Chest CT scans demonstrated various radiological changes leading to diagnostic challenges. Differential diagnoses included empyema, pleural disease progression, pulmonary oedema, pneumonitis, lymphangitis and atypical infections. She deteriorated despite a multimodality treatment strategy. Postmortem examination confirmed that lung changes were consistent with a bronchoalveolar carcinoma unrelated to the known metastatic breast cancer. The eventual knowledge of this diagnosis was reassuring to the treating medical team and a comfort to the relatives who witnessed the lack of response to standard treatment.
- breast cancer
- malignant disease and immunosuppression
- respiratory medicine
Statistics from Altmetric.com
Contributors SKN, MF, CR and CH-W were responsible for study conception and design, acquisition, analysis and interpretation of data, drafting of manuscript, critical revision and final approval of manuscript to be published.
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 Next of kin consent obtained.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.