OBJECTIVE. The objective of this study was to characterize the findings on chest radiographs and CT scans in patients with metastatic pulmonary calcification due to hypercalcemia. MATERIALS AND METHODS. The chest radiographs and CT scans of seven patients with biopsy-proved metastatic pulmonary calcification were reviewed by two observers. Metastatic calcification was due to chronic renal failure (n = 4), T-cell leukemia (n = 1), multiple endocrine neoplasia type 1 syndrome (n = 1), and idiopathic hypercalcemia (n = 1). RESULTS. Numerous nodular opacities measuring 3-10 mm in diameter were seen on the chest radiographs in five cases, and patchy areas of parenchymal opacification were seen in two cases. Calcification of the nodules was evident in two cases. On CT scans, pulmonary nodules were present in all seven cases. These nodules were predominant in the upper lung zone in three cases, were diffuse in three cases, and were predominant in the lower lung zone in one case. Calcification of the nodules was evident on the CT scans in four of the seven cases, and calcification of vessels in the chest wall was evident in six of seven cases. Other findings on CT scans included diffuse areas of ground-glass attenuation (n = 3) and patchy consolidation (n = 2). CONCLUSION. Numerous small nodules are the most common finding on the chest radiographs of patients with metastatic pulmonary calcification. The calcific nature of the nodules is seldom obvious, however. Pulmonary nodules are also the most common finding on CT scans, where the calcific nature of the nodules is more readily apparent. Additionally, calcification is often seen in the vessels of the chest wall on CT scans. The combination of calcified nodules and calcified vessels in the chest wall on CT scans may be characteristic.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging