Incidental lung findings on noncontrast computed tomography in patients presenting with renal and ureteric colic compliants
Incidental lung findings in patients with colic
Keywords:Colic, computed tomography, incidental, lung findings, radiology, urolithiasis
Objective: In patients presenting to the emergency department with flank pain suggestive of acute colic, most centers worldwide are increasingly using computed tomography (CT) to evaluate renal/ureteric colic. This study was conducted to determine the incidental pulmonary findings in computed tomography performed for suspected renal and ureteric colic.
Methods: We retrospectively reviewed consecutive patients referred to our clinic with a prediagnosis of urolithiasis who underwent noncontrast abdominal CT between August 2022 and August 2023. In this study, we included 286 patients to evaluate pulmonary findings.
Results: Of the 286 patients, 212 (74.2%) were male and 74 (25.8%) were female. The mean age of the patients was 50.55±14.95 years. While 20% of the patients were 65 years of age or older, 80% were under 65 years of age. Tomographic evaluation of the lungs showed one or more findings in 34% (98) of the patients included in the study. The most common tomographic finding in the lungs was fibrotic changes in 12.9% (37), while the least common finding was bronchiectatic changes in only one patient (3.5%). Other incidental lung findings included atelectasis, lung nodules, effusion, increased pleural thickness, consolidation, ground glass appearance, infiltration, emphysematous lung changes, air cysts and lung mass, which were observed in three patients.
Conclusion: Incidental findings are often encountered in abdominal CT scans performed with a different diagnosis. Most of these findings are clinically insignificant. However, given that the clinical significance of incidental findings may increase with age or may lead us to a new diagnosis not previously known to the patient, findings of the lung parenchyma in the imaging field should be included in the radiological reporting of abdominal CT scans.
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