Reversible pulmonary toxicity due to lenalidomide

Stephanie Coates, Alan Barker, Stephen Spurgeon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Lenalidomide is a derivative of thalidomide and is FDA-approved for the treatment of myelodysplastic syndrome and, in combination with dexamethasone, for the treatment of relapsed multiple myeloma. Pulmonary toxicity with thalidomide is a recognized potential complication; however, there have only been two case reports in the literature of lenalidomide-associated pulmonary toxicity. In this case, we describe a patient who developed profound dyspnea, decreased exercisetolerance, and new ground-glass opacities with reticulation, consistent with a nonspecific interstitial pneumonia pattern. Clinical suspicion for pulmonary drug toxicity was high and lenalidomide was discontinued. Within 2 weeks of stopping lenalidomide, the patient had significant improvement in dyspnea and interstitial changes on CT were resolving. After 8 weeks, there was complete resolution of symptoms. Lenalidomide-induced pulmonary toxicity is significantly debilitating but, to date, it appears to be reversible with discontinuation of the medication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)284-286
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Oncology Pharmacy Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2012


  • Lenalidomide
  • drug toxicity
  • pulmonary toxicity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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