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February 10, 1975

Honeycomb Lung (Interstitial Fibrosis)

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Diagnostic Radiologic Pathology, Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (LCDR Reed), and the Department of Radiology, Walter Reed Army Medical Center (COL Reeder), Washington, DC 20012.

JAMA. 1975;231(6):646-647. doi:10.1001/jama.1975.03240180080028


  1. [Cystic bronchiectasis]

  2. Histiocytosis X (especially eosinophilic granuloma)

  3. Idiopathic interstitial fibrosis (Hamman-Rich

  1. Pneumoconiosis

  2. Sarcoidosis


  1. Amyloidosis

  2. Chemical inhalation (late stage)

  3. Desquamative interstitial pneumonitis (DIP)

  4. Drug sensitivity, chronic or recurrent (eg, nitrofurantoin, hexamethonium, busulfan)

  5. Gaucher disease

  6. Lipoid pneumonia (eg, mineral oil aspiration)

  7. [Lymphangiomyomatosis]

  8. Oxygen toxicity

  9. [Mucoviscidosis]

  10. Neurofibromatosis

  11. Rheumatoid lung

  12. Scleroderma; dermatomyositis

  13. Sensitivity pneumonitis, recurrent (eg, farmer's lung, bagassosis)

  14. Tuberous sclerosis (Entities in brackets can be confused roentgenographically with true honeycomb lung.


Diagnosis  Eosinophilic granuloma.

COMMENTS  In analyzing this Gamut, a number of the possibilities offered, such as chemical inhalation, rheumatoid lung, and scleroderma are excluded by the lack of specific clinical information. Of the common causes, cystic bronchiectasis tends to show fluid in the cysts and to expand on inspiration; pneumoconiotics have a history of dust exposure. Therefore, idiopathic interstitial fibrosis (the