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Arch Pathol Lab Med. 2000 Dec;124(12):1813-5.

Cholesterol granulomas of the lungs associated with microangiopathic hemolytic anemia and thrombocytopenia in pulmonary hypertension.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of New Mexico School of Medicine, Albuquerque, NM 87131-5301, USA.


Cholesterol granulomas unrelated to endogenous lipoid pneumonia, pulmonary alveolar proteinosis, or cholesterol pneumonia are a rare finding during pneumectomy or autopsy. They have been occasionally reported in association with pulmonary hypertension. We report a case where these lesions were associated with long-standing pulmonary hypertension and microangiopathic hemolytic anemia and thrombocytopenia. Plexiform lesions were present in the pulmonary vasculature secondary to pulmonary hypertension, causing hemolysis and thrombocytopenia. We suggest that destruction of red blood cells and platelets could provide membrane lipids that are taken up by phagocytic cells, which promotes the formation of these cholesterol deposits.

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