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Radiology. 1999 Nov;213(2):537-44.

Cystic fibrosis: CT assessment of lung involvement in children and adults.

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Department of Radiology, University of Vienna, Austria.



To compare a computed tomographic (CT)-based scoring system with nonimaging indexes of pulmonary status in patients with cystic fibrosis.


Pulmonary CT findings were assessed in 117 patients with cystic fibrosis, with cases classified according to three groups by age; 0-5 years, 6-16 years, and 17 years and older. Images were examined for specific abnormalities, and the severity and anatomic extent of each sign were used to generate a score. Scores in each category and the global score for each patient were correlated with pulmonary function test results, clinical status, serum immunoglobulin levels, and genotype, all obtained within 2 weeks of CT.


The most frequent individual CT abnormalities were bronchiectasis in 94 (80.3%), peribronchial wall thickening in 89 (76.1%), mosaic perfusion in 71 (63.9%), and mucous plugging in 56 (51.3%) patients. The percentage of patients with specific CT findings and the overall CT scores increased significantly (P < .05) with progressively increasing age groups. All CT findings and the overall CT scores correlated significantly (P < .05) with the pulmonary function test results, serum immunoglobulin levels, and clinical scores. No relationship was observed between genotype and CT scores.


Scoring of CT studies in patients with cystic fibrosis seems to offer a reliable way to monitor disease status and progression and may provide a reasonable tool to assess treatment interventions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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