radiological appearance of extrinsic allergic alveolitis

Last reviewed 01/2018

The features of extrinsic allergic alveolitis on chest radiography include:

  • no abnormality in the early disease

  • the lungs are small with some ground glass shadowing

  • with regular exposure to the allergen:
    • fluffy, nodular or streaky shadowing develops
    • the upper lobes are more commonly affected
    • these shadows represent areas of granuloma formation and fibrosis

  • in severe disease there may be areas of honeycomb lung