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CASE REPORT
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 20-24

A rare case of allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis in a patient with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease


1 Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute, University of Delhi, Delhi, India
2 Department of Medical Mycology, Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute, University of Delhi, Delhi, India

Correspondence Address:
S N Gaur
Department of Pulmonary Medicine, Vallabhbhai Patel Chest Institute, University of Delhi, Post Box 2101, Delhi 110 007
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-6691.104442

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Allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA) is known to complicate asthma and cystic fibrosis, but an association of ABPA with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has also been found lately. The mechanism through which ABPA operates is still an enigma. With the discovery of ABPA in COPD, interest in the theory that asthma and COPD could share a common etiology has been rekindled. Herein, we present the case of a 60-year-old male, diagnosed case of COPD, who reported exacerbations during the monsoons, which mandated frequent courses of systemic steroids. He was diagnosed to have co-existing ABPA based on positive skin tests to Aspergillus niger, A. flavus, A. fumigatus, and A. tamarii and raised serum total IgE and specific IgE against Aspergillus spp. His CT scan showed centrilobular and panacinar emphysema along with central bronchiectasis. The spirometry showed a significant response to bronchodilators. The patient fulfilled all the minimal essential requirements for the diagnosis of ABPA, except asthma. The patient responded well to systemic steroids. This report makes an important observation that species of Aspergillus other than A. fumigatus could be instrumental in causing ABPA in patients with COPD, unlike that seen in asthma. The possible etiologic mechanisms underlying the development of ABPA in COPD and also the evolution of ABPA from its serological to bronchiectasis variant are discussed in this report.


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