Computed tomographic and radiological analysis of HCl injury in human lungs

Euddeum Shim, Yoonmi Choe, Je Hyeong Kim, Eun Young Kang, Yu Whan Oh, Yeon Ji Chung, Junghan Lee, Meyoung kon Kim, Ki Yeol Lee, Ji Yung Choo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although hydrochloric acid (HCl) inhalation-induced lung injury occurs often, its imaging findings are not well-known. In the present study, we retrospectively reviewed imaging studies and clinical data from seven patients who were treated for HCl inhalation, after estimation of in vitro toxicological effects of several strong acids in human lung cells. Cell death in the lungs which increased with prolonged incubation time and concentration of HCl, was predominantly associated with the apoptosis, compared with the necrosis. HCl inhalation-induced lung injuries showed three patterns of computed tomography (CT) findings: ground glass opacities with interstitial thickening suggesting permeability pulmonary edema, irregular linear abnormalities, and centrilobular nodules. These abnormalities tended to improve within 1 week of exposure, leaving only minimal changes. These patterns of imaging illustrations, according to the time frame, may help physicians and radiologists comprehend the pathophysiology of these injuries, and to predict the prognosis of HCl inhalation-induced lung injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)433-442
Number of pages10
JournalMolecular and Cellular Toxicology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Dec
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, The Korean Society of Toxicogenomics and Toxicoproteomics and Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.


  • CT
  • Chest radiograph
  • Hydrogen chloride
  • Inhalation
  • Lung injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Toxicology
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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