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Case Reports in Pathology
Volume 2017, Article ID 1936282, 6 pages
Case Report

Diffuse Alveolar Hemorrhage in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: Histopathologic Features and Clinical Correlations

Department of Pathology, Yale University, 310 Cedar Street, New Haven, CT 06510, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to A. Brian West; ude.elay@tsew.nairb

Received 15 December 2016; Revised 28 March 2017; Accepted 10 April 2017; Published 27 April 2017

Academic Editor: Zsuzsa Schaff

Copyright © 2017 Robert Ta et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The case of a 16-year-old African-American girl with systemic lupus erythematosus, who developed diffuse alveolar hemorrhage with fatal consequences, is described. Diffuse alveolar hemorrhage is a rare but serious complication of systemic lupus. It occurs in three distinct but overlapping phenotypes, acute capillaritis, bland pulmonary hemorrhage, and diffuse alveolar damage, each of which is associated with a different group of underlying conditions. Diffuse alveolar hemorrhage is a medical emergency: choice of treatment depends on early diagnosis and determination of the underlying etiology. Acute infection, superimposed on diffuse alveolar hemorrhage in the setting of immune compromise, is often a terminal event, as in this case.