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May - August 2004: 
Volume 17, Issue 2

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Pulmonary toxicity of antineoplastic drugs
Abstract
Pulmonary toxicity resulting from treatment with antineoplastic drugs is common because of the wide use of such drugs in the treatment of malignant and other diseases. It is estimated that approximately 10% of patients receiving cytotoxic drugs will develop pulmonary toxicity. The risk of toxicity increases in the presence of other factors. The diagnostic approach includes the history and clinical examination, chest radiography, high resolution computed tomography, lung function studies, bronchoscopy with transbronchial biopsy and bronchoalveolar lavage and finally open lung biopsy. It is important to exclude other conditions such as progression of the primary disease, lower respiratory tract infections, and radiation-induced lung injury. The management of antineoplastic drug related pulmonary toxicity is based on clinical suspicion, discontinuation of the drug and administration of corticosteroids. Mortality varies among different drugs, and even with early treatment there may be residual lung da¬mage. Pneumon 2004, 17(2):120-137.