Clinical Demonstration of Efficiency and Reversibility of Hypoxic Pulmonary Vasoconstriction in a Patient Presenting with Unilateral Incomplete Bronchial Occlusion

PVRI Member Authors: Nicholas Morrell


Although hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction is a well-recognized physiological phenomenon it is unusual to observe and assess its efficiency in clinical practice. Here, we report the case of a 50-year-old female who presented with unilateral incomplete bronchial occlusion due to a carcinoid tumor involving the left main bronchus in the absence of atelectasis. Ventilation-perfusion imaging revealed absent ventilation and perfusion to the left lung. She underwent bronchotomy and removal of the tumor. One month after the operation a further ventilation-perfusion lung scan revealed complete restoration of ventilation to the left lung and almost complete recovery of the perfusion. This unusual case demonstrates the marked efficiency of hypoxic pulmonary vasoconstriction at the level of a single lung and its reversible nature following relief of regional hypoxia. 

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Hypoxia/ Intermittent Hypoxia/ Hypoxia-Ischemia and Ischemia-Reperfusion Injury
Lung Cancer
Lung Repair and Regeneration
Thoracic Surgery and Transplantation


Syeda Jafri, Pasupathy Sivasothy, Francis Wells, Nicholas W. Morrell

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Pulmonary Circulation Vol 1: No 1 cover image

March 2011

Pulmonary Circulation Vol 1: No 1

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