Pulmonary sporotrichosis: Case series and systematic analysis of literature on clinico-radiological patterns and management outcomes

A.K. Aung, Bing Teh, C. Mcgrath, Philip Thompson

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    Pulmonary infections by Sporothrix spp. manifest radiologically as cavitary or non-cavitary disease depending on whether the infection is primary pulmonary or multifocal sporotrichosis. Despite current guidelines, the optimal management for pulmonary sporotrichosis remains unclear. In order to clarify this, we present two cases of pulmonary sporotrichosis, as well as the results of a comprehensive literature review of treatment outcomes based on clinico-radiological presentation patterns of the disease. A literature search of all case reports in English language over the last 50 years (1960-2010) was conducted. Data on patient characteristics, risk factors, clinico-radiological patterns, treatment modalities and outcomes were collected and analyzed. A total of 86 cases were identified, i.e., 64 (74.4%) primary pulmonary and 22 (25.6%) multifocal sporotrichosis. Radiologically, primary pulmonary disease was commonly characterized by cavity formation which was lacking in multifocal infections (P = 0.0001). Immunosuppressant use was more common in multifocal sporotrichosis (P = 0.0001), while hemoptysis was more common in primary pulmonary form (P = 0.01). No other differences in patient characteristics or risk factors were noted. Extra-pulmonary multifocal sporotrichosis most commonly involved skin (81.8%) and joints (45.4%). For patients with cavitary primary pulmonary sporotrichosis, outcomes from medical therapy alone were inferior to surgical intervention (P = 0.02). However, for both primary pulmonary and multifocal sporotrichosis with non-cavitary disease, medical therapy alone provided good outcomes. Only 12 (16.7%) cases were treated with itraconazole. Treatment of pulmonary sporotrichosis should be guided by the clinico-radiological patterns of presentation. Medical therapy alone is likely sufficient for non-cavitary disease while early surgery should be considered for cavitary primary pulmonary sporotrichosis. The experience in treating cavitary disease with itraconazole alone is limited and further data are required. © 2013 ISHAM.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)534-544
    JournalMedical Mycology
    Issue number5
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

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