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Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in HIV-infected patients: effect of steroid therapy on surfactant level.


Respir Med. 1999 Jun;93(6):373-8. Unique Identifier : AIDSLINE

Previous studies have suggested alterations in pulmonary surfactant lipid in the setting of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia in HIV-infected patients. Because pulmonary surfactant lipid is composed of a variety of lipid products and because other phospholipids might be present in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) lipid determinations, a single molecular species of phospholipid which comprises a substantial portion of the surfactant lipid fraction, dipalmitoyl phosphatidylcholine (DPPC), was measured by capillary column gas chromatography in BAL samples taken at the time of the diagnosis of P. carinii pneumonia, and 10 days after treatment for P. carinii pneumonia. DPPC was measured at day 0 and day 10 in seven patients who had been randomized to receive methylprednisolone adjuvant therapy for P. carinii pneumonia and in six patients who had been randomized to not receive methylprednisolone therapy. The level of DPPC in BAL from all patients at day 0 was 0.49 +/- 0.06 microgram ml-1 BAL. This level is significantly lower that the level of DPPC determined in BAL from five normal volunteers 2.48 +/- 0.40 micrograms ml-1. At day 0, the BAL level of DPPC in patients treated with methylprednisolone was not different from the BAL level of DPPC in patients not treated with methylprednisolone. By day 10 of therapy for P. carinii pneumonia, BAL levels of DPPC in all patients had increased to 1.05 +/- 0.19 micrograms ml-1 BAL. At day 10 DPPC levels in the methylprednisolone treated group were not different from the group not treated with methylprednisolone. We conclude that in HIV-infected patients, lung surfactant lipid is reduced in the setting of P. carinii pneumonia. The lipid levels return toward normal levels with treatment. Adjuvant therapy with corticosteroids does not alter the rate of recovery of surfactant lipid levels at least after 10 days of therapy.

CLINICAL TRIAL JOURNAL ARTICLE MULTICENTER STUDY RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL Adult AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections/COMPLICATIONS/*DRUG THERAPY/ METABOLISM Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid Chemotherapy, Adjuvant Female Glucocorticoids, Synthetic/*THERAPEUTIC USE Human Male Methylprednisolone/*THERAPEUTIC USE Middle Age Pneumocystis carinii Infections/COMPLICATIONS/*DRUG THERAPY/ METABOLISM 1,2-Dipalmitoylphosphatidylcholine/*METABOLISM


Information in this article was accurate in December 30, 1999. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.