Evaluation of Patients with Behcet-s Disease Presenting with Pulmonary Symptoms
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Objective: Behcet-s disease (BD) is a multisystem disorder and survival depends on pulmonary involvement, especially pulmonary artery aneurysm. Therefore early diagnosis and treatment of pulmonary involvement are very important. This study was conducted to evaluate clinical features, treatment results and outcome of patients with BD presenting with pulmonary symptoms. Material and Methods: Medical records of patients diagnosed as BD over a 17-years period from 1991 to 2008 who presented with pulmonary symptoms in two different chest clinics were reviewed retrospectively. Clinical and radiological findings, treatment and follow-up results were investigated. Results: Twenty-two patients (19 males, three females) diagnosed with BD were included. The mean age was 35.4 years. Sixteen of the patients (72.7%) were diagnosed with BD at chest clinics for first time. Main presenting pulmonary symptom was hemoptysis (72.7%) and six of them (27.3%) had massive hemoptysis. Thirteen patients (59%) had pulmonary artery aneurysms, five of them also had thrombosis within the aneurysm. Nineteen patients (86%) were administered immunosupressive therapy. Eighteen (81.8%) of the patients were followed, median follow-up time was four years. Thirteen patients responded to immunosuppressive therapy. Three patients (16.7%) died, two of them with massive hemoptysis. Conclusion: BD should be kept in mind in differential diagnosis of hemoptysis in young patients, especially in countries with high incidence of BD. Early diagnosis and aggressive treatment for pulmonary involvement can prevent a fatal outcome.