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August 19, 1974

Unilateral Pulmonary Edema

Author Affiliations

From the departments of medicine and radiology, William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, Mich.

JAMA. 1974;229(8):1094-1095. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230460044021

PULMONARY edema can manifest itself in chronic obstructive lung disease with an atypical pattern.1 The classic appearance of pulmonary edema as "bat wing" on chest roentgenogram can occur regardless of the underlying disease. Unilateral pulmonary edema is rare and at times it may present problems in differential diagnosis such as aspiration pneumonitis or an inflammatory process.

Report of a Case  A 68-year-old white man was admitted to William Beaumont Hospital with increasing shortness of breath. Since the patient had been 17 years of age, he was known to be asthmatic. He also had a long history of schizophrenia. Tedral was given (a mixture of theophylline, ephedrine hydrochloride, and pentobarbital), one tablet three times a day, prednisone, 5 mg/day, and chlorpromazine, 200 mg/day. The patient was also known in the past to adjust medications at his own discretion. On the day of admission, he had wheezing and slight shortness of