Disease Information for Nocardiosis, pulmonary: Definition

  • Nocardiosis ; Lung Nocardiosis; Nocardiosis is an infectious pulmonary disease characterized by abscesses in the lungs; These abscesses may extend through the chest wall; The infection is spread through the body via the bloodstream by a microorganism called Nocardia asteroides; [NORD]---------------------------------------------Nocardia species are found worldwide in the soil Nocardiosis is found most commonly in patients who are compromised (eg, receiving steroids,

    immunosuppressive therapy, lymphoma, leukemia, lung cancer, and other pulmonary infections Other underlying conditions associated with

    nocardiosis are pemphigus vulgaris, Whipple"s disease, Goodpasture"s syndrome, Cushing"s disease, cirrhosis, ulcerative colitis, and rheumatoid arthritis Between 500 to 1000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States; Approximately 2% of patients with AIDS develop nocardiosis; Occur more commonly in men than in women (2:1)-Adults > children; The most common presentation of nocardiosis is pneumonia (75%) withfever, chills, dyspnea, and a productive cough; Presentation can be acute, subacute, or chronic; Nocardiosis should be suspected if soft tissue abscesses or CNS tumors or abscesses form in conjunction with the pulmonary infection; Pulmonary infection may spread into the pericardium, mediastinum, and superior vena cava; Infection can follow skin puncture by a thorn or splinter with

    inoculation and introduction of the microorganism and lead to: Cellulitis; Lymphocutaneous nodules appearing along lymphatic sites draining the infected puncture wound ; Mycetoma (Madura foot), a chronic deep nodular infection usually involving the hands or feet that can cause skin breakdown, fistula formation, and spread along the fascial planes to infect surrounding skin, subcutaneous tissue and bone; The CNS system is infected in approximately one third of all cases; Brain abscesses is the most common pathologic finding; Dissemination of nocardiosis may infect other tissues