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Gazzetta Medica Italiana Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2009 December;168(6):399-403

Copyright © 2010 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: Italian

Idiopathic pulmonary hemosiderosis: etiopathogenetic and therapeutic considerations

Pascalis L., Saba L., Pia G., Mallarini G.

1 Reparto di Medicina Interna 2a, Ospedale San Giovanni di Dio, ASL 8, Cagliari 2 Istituto di Radiologia, Università degli Studi di Cagliari, Cagliari 3 Pronto Soccorso, Ospedale SS. Trinità, ASL 8, Cagliari


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Based on a recent observation of a case of idiopathic pulmonary hemosiderosis (IPH) following relapse of the disease, which was recalcitrant to cortisone therapy alone, and on a review of the literature, the authors formulated a hypothesis for its etiopathogenesis and applied an immunosuppressant protocol which was found to resolve not only IPH but also other autoimmune diseases as well. A possible pathogenic link is suggested between tobacco smoking and antibody activity against target antigens that constitute a component of the non-collagenous region of the alpha 3 chain of collagen IV, prevalently expressed on the alveolar basal membrane, which could become a target of antibody activity in subjects exposed to tobacco smoke or with smoking-induced tissue damage.

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