How is pneumonia differentiated from non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) on chest radiographs?

Updated: Aug 27, 2019
  • Author: Sat Sharma, MD, FRCPC; Chief Editor: Eugene C Lin, MD  more...
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Indirect signs of involvement of contiguous structures also may be found. Bronchogenic carcinoma may involve the surrounding thoracic structures, which often indicates that the tumor is not resectable. Findings include the following:

  • Osteolytic lesions and pathologic fractures of rib and vertebra

  • Phrenic nerve involvement causing diaphragmatic paralysis and exhibiting ipsilateral elevation of involved diaphragm

  • Pleural effusion secondary to visceral pleural involvement or lymphatic obstruction (confirm the presence of a malignant effusion using thoracentesis)

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