Biology:Radiation-induced lung injury

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Radiation-induced lung injury is a general term for damage to the lungs as a result of exposure to ionizing radiation.[1] In general terms, such damage is divided into early inflammatory damage (radiation pneumonitis) and later complications of chronic scarring (radiation fibrosis). Pulmonary radiation injury most commonly occurs as a result of radiation therapy administered to treat cancer.

Symptoms and signs

The lungs are a radiosensitive organ, and radiation pneumonitis can occur leading to pulmonary insufficiency and death (100% after exposure to 50 gray of radiation), in a few months. Radiation pneumonitis is characterized by:

Symptoms of radiation pneumonitis include: fever, cough, chest congestion, shortness of breath, chest pain



High resolution CT thorax


See also

  • Radiation poisoning


  1. Marks, Lawrence B.; Yu, Xiaoli; Vujaskovic, Zjelko; Small, William; Folz, Rodney; Anscher, Mitchell S. (July 2003). "Radiation-induced lung injury". Seminars in Radiation Oncology 13 (3): 333–345. doi:10.1016/S1053-4296(03)00034-1. ISSN 1053-4296. PMID 12903021. 

Further reading

External links

Classification lung injury was the original source. Read more.