Cannabinoid Oil Vaping-Associated Lung Injury and its Radiographic Appearance

Published:November 18, 2019DOI:



      Lung injury associated with cannabinoid oil vaping is rapidly becoming a serious public health concern. We describe the clinical and radiographic presentations of 5 patients with lung injury associated with vaping cannabinoid oils seen at a single institution.


      Of the 5 patients with suspected vaping-associated lung injury seen at our institution, 4 required supplemental oxygen, and all these 4 were admitted to the hospital. Three patients required admission to the intensive care unit. None of the patients required mechanical ventilation. All patients demonstrated a consistent radiologic appearance of diffuse bilateral ground-glass lung opacities that spared the extreme periphery. Three patients underwent bronchoalveolar lavage, which revealed lipid-laden macrophages in 2 of them. All patients were successfully discharged from the hospital. Four received only supportive care, while the fifth required intravenous followed by oral corticosteroids.


      We report the clinical and radiographic presentation of 5 patients at our institution with cannabinoid oil vaping-associated lung injury. All patients displayed a consistent chest radiographic pattern of injury. Most responded to supportive care, although one required the addition of corticosteroids. Bronchoalveolar lavage results suggest that this injury may related to a toxic form of lipoid pneumonia.


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