Lung Hyperlucency: A Clinical-Radiologic Algorithmic Approach to Diagnosis

Sujith V. Cherian, Francis Girvin, David P. Naidich, Stephen Machnicki, Kevin K. Brown, Jay H. Ryu, Nishant Gupta, Vishisht Mehta, Rosa M. Estrada -Y- Martin, Mangala Narasimhan, Margarita Oks, Suhail Raoof

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Areas of diminished lung density are frequently identified both on routine chest radiographs and chest CT examinations. Colloquially referred to as hyperlucent foci of lung, a broad range of underlying pathophysiologic mechanisms and differential diagnoses account for these changes. Despite this, the spectrum of etiologies can be categorized into underlying parenchymal, airway, and vascular-related entities. The purpose of this review is to provide a practical diagnostic algorithmic approach to pulmonary hyperlucencies incorporating clinical history and characteristic imaging patterns to narrow the differential.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)119-141
Number of pages23
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2020


  • airway
  • lung hyperlucency
  • parenchymal
  • pulmonary hyperlucency
  • vascular

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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