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February 1994

Radiological Cases of the Month

Author Affiliations

From the Pediatric Pulmonary Division, National Jewish Center for Immunology and Respiratory Medicine, Denver, Colo (Dr Fan), and the Department of Pediatrics, Fitzsimons Army Medical Center (Dr Graham), University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver (Drs Fan and Graham).

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 1994;148(2):205-206. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1994.02170020091016

Denouement and Discussion 

Lipoid Pneumonia From Mineral Oil Aspiration  A 4-month-old girl was referred for diagnostic evaluation of persistent respiratory distress and hypoxemia. She was well until age 2 months when she developed "congestion" and a "rattling" cough. She was initially treated with oral erythromycin, but slowly deteriorated with progressive respiratory distress and fever. Medical history revealed that at age 2 weeks, the patient had developed constipation. This symptom was treated successfully with oral administration of mineral oil for 10 days.The results of the physical examination revealed a pale, well-developed 4-month-old girl in mild respiratory distress. There were diffuse inspiratory crackles and occasional expiratory wheezing on chest auscultation.The pulse oximetry result in room air was 88%. Chest roentgenography was performed (Figure 1). Pertinent laboratory findings were as follows: complete blood cell count, 31.5×106; a differential cell count of 70 segmental forms; hemoglobin, 93 g/L; hematocrit, 0.28; and platelet count,

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