Diagnosing and managing bronchiolitis obliterans in children.Expert Rev Respir Med 2019; 13(5):481-488ER
Bronchiolitis obliterans (BO) is a chronic and irreversible obstructive lung disease leading to the obstruction and/or obliteration of the small airways. Three main BO entities are distinguished: post-infectious BO (PIBO); BO post lung transplantation; and BO after bone marrow transplantation (BMT) or hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT). All three entities are separate, however, there are similarities in histopathological characteristics and possibly in aspects of the development pathway. Areas covered: We review current evidence of bronchiolitis obliterans diagnosis and management in children. The diagnosis of BO is usually based on a combination of history, clinical and radiological findings, although lung biopsy and histopathology remain the gold standard approaches to confirm BO. Expert opinion: At present, we do not have a clear understanding of the mechanisms of the development of BO and lack strong evidence for treatment. Although most BO in children is post-infectious, most of the current evidence for treatment originates from studies analyzing BO in adult lung transplant and HSCT patients. BO management requires multidisciplinary approach and care in specialized centers.