Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia: clinical and radiological features Academic Article uri icon

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  • OBJECTIVE: To alert about the great variability of clinical and radiological features of Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia in pediatric patients. Although it has been referred as a prevalent entity in children, its diagnosis is, many times, retarded due to the lack of a pattern that can really be considered classic.METHODS: The authors present 5 cases of mycoplasma pneumonia in children. Diagnostic difficulties, clinical features, radiological findings and evolution after treatment are discussed. The cases have their significant peculiarities confronted with the findings of medical literature of the last two decades, obtained through a bibliographic research in Medline about the subject.RESULTS: All the patients were between 6 and 9 years old, characteristically the most prevalent age group for this infection. In none of the cases the possibility of mycoplasma infection was considered at first. Clinical hypothesis like sinusal aspirative pneumonia, tuberculosis, and asthma were initially considered, but later on discarded. Except for one, all the other patients referred previous treatment with antibiotics. The initial radiological findings were different among the cases: bronchopneumonic consolidations, pleural effusion, perihilar adenopathy with interstitial infiltrated, and atelectasic areas. After the institution of specific therapy, clinical and radiological evolution was favorable in all cases.CONCLUSIONS: Mycoplasma pneumoniae pneumonia has a great sort of clinical presentations. In the same way the complementary radiological investigation may also demonstrate different patterns of presentation. Due to its great variability, mycoplasma is not commonly considered as the first diagnosis, even though it is a prevalent disease at pediatric age. This may lead to a delay in the diagnosis and institution of an appropriate treatment.


  • Amantéa, Sérgio
  • Manica, André LL
  • Leães, Carolina GS
  • Frey, Benicio

publication date

  • July 15, 2000