Lung function abnormalities after bone marrow transplantation in children: Has the trend recently changed?

Isa Cerveri, Paola Fulgoni, Giovanna Giorgiani, Maria C. Zoia, Massimiliano Beccaria, Carmine Tinelli, Franco Locatelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Study objectives: To evaluate early and late lung function abnormalities and their predictors in a large sample of children who underwent bone marrow transplantation (BMT) for leukemias in the 1990s, highlighting changes with respect to the 1980s. Designs: Prospective cohort. Setting: A university department of pediatrics. Participants: Seventy-five consecutive children who underwent BMT were enrolled in the study (median age, 11 years; range, 6 to 19 years; 45 male and 30 female children). Twenty-three children received autologous BMT, and 52 children received allogeneic BMT; 50 children completed the study. Measurements: Clinical examinations and lung function tests were performed before BMT, and 3 to 6 months, 12 months, and 24 months after BMT. Results: Before BMT, at 3 to 6 months after BMT, and at 24 months after BMT, 44%, 85%, and 62% of children, respectively, had altered lung function in the absence of persistent respiratory symptoms. Between 3 months and 6 months after BMT, a restrictive pattern was the most frequent abnormality. The only predictive factors for late abnormalities were transplantation performed in the advanced disease phase (odds ratio [OR], 6.75; p = 0.005) and bronchopulmonary infections (OR, 3.9; p <0.05). Conclusions: These data suggest that a significant proportion of children who undergo BMT, especially if for leukemia in advanced phase, have early and late pulmonary abnormalities. These abnormalities, especially the late ones, seem to be more severe than patients reported in studies analyzing children undergoing BMT in the 1980s. This could be due to the more intensive front-line treatment protocols employed for treatment of children with acute leukemia in the 1990s.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1900-1906
Number of pages7
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • Bone marrow transplantation
  • Lung function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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