We evaluated the effects of daily prednisone therapy on alveolitis parameters and pulmonary function tests over a six month period in patients with active pulmonary sarcoidosis (>28% T lymphocytes in bronchoalveolar lavage and positive gallium-67 (67Ga) lung scans). 10 patients with biopsyproven lung disease were studied. Analysis of bronchoalveolar lavage cells and of67Ga scanning at the beginning and at the end of the study period demonstrated that prednisone treatment significantly lowered the percentages of T lymphocytes in bronchoalveolar lavage in all patients (baseline 48±3%, after treatment 19±5%, p67Ga lung scans improved in 8 of the 10 patients. Pulmonary function tests showed improvement of the parameters studied (+7.5±2.1% mean change in vital capacity, +4.7±1.6% mean change in total lung capacity, +5.4±2% mean change in forced expiratory volume in one second and +6.2±1.5% mean change in diffusing capacity). In addition none of the treated patients deteriorated functionally and 9 of the 10 patients improved more than 10% in at least one parameter. These results indicate that daily oral prednisone therapy is effective in suppressing the alveolitis in pulmonary sarcoidosis and that it is able to preserve lung functions in patients who, without treatment, would be likely to deteriorate.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine