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Canadian Respiratory Journal
Volume 2016, Article ID 4021928, 5 pages
Research Article

The Clinical Clues of Pulmonary Alveolar Proteinosis: A Report of 11 Cases and Literature Review

Department of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital of Wenzhou Medical University, Wenzhou, Zhejiang 325000, China

Received 24 November 2015; Revised 16 March 2016; Accepted 6 April 2016

Academic Editor: Angelo G. Corsico

Copyright © 2016 Qiongya Mo 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.


Pulmonary alveolar proteinosis (PAP) is a rare interstitial lung disease characterized by the abnormal alveolar accumulation of surfactant components. The diagnosis of PAP can be easily missed since it is rare and lacks specific clinical symptoms. It is of great importance to have a better understanding of the crucial clue to clinically diagnose PAP and take PAP into consideration in the differential diagnosis of interstitial pulmonary diseases or other diseases with similar manifestations. Here, we analyze the clinical characteristics of 11 cases of PAP patients in local hospital and review the relevant literature in order to provide more information in diagnosis and management of PAP. In our observation, cyfra21-1 and neuron-specific enolase (NSE) known as tumor markers probably can be useful serum markers for diagnosis of PAP. As for the method of pathologic diagnosis, open-lung biopsy was the gold standard but now it is less required because findings on examination of bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) can help to make the diagnosis. We also have deep experience about when and how to carry out lung lavage.