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AIMS: To document the presence and extent of air trapping on high resolution computed tomography (HRCT) in patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis and correlate HRCT features with pulmonary function tests. METHODS: Twenty-one patients with pulmonary sarcoidosis underwent HRCT and pulmonary function assessment at presentation. Inspiratory and expiratory HRCT were assessed for the presence and extent of air trapping, ground-glass opacification, nodularity, septal thickening, bronchiectasis and parenchymal distortion. HRCT features were correlated with pulmonary function tests. RESULTS: Air trapping on expiratory HRCT was present in 20/21 (95%) patients. The extent of air trapping correlated with percentage predicted residual volume (RV)/total lung capacity (TLC) (r = 0.499; P < 0.05) and percentage predicted maximal mid-expiratory flow rate between 25 and 75% of the vital capacity (r = -0.54; P < 0,05). Ground-glass opacification was present in four of 21 (19%), nodularity in 18/21 (86%), septal thickening in 18/21 (86%), traction bronchiectasis in 14/21 (67%) and distortion in 12/21 (57%) of patients; there were no significant relationships between these CT features and pulmonary function results. CONCLUSION: Air trapping is a common feature in sarcoidosis and correlates with evidence of small airways disease on pulmonary function testing. (C) 2000 The Royal College of Radiologists.

Original publication




Journal article


Clinical Radiology

Publication Date





217 - 221