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Lung Disease & Respiratory Health Center

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Acute Eosinophilic Pneumonia

It is possible that the main title of the report Acute Eosinophilic Pneumonia is not the name you expected. Please check the synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and disorder subdivision(s) covered by this report.


  • AEP
  • IAEP
  • idiopathic acute eosinophilic pneumonia

Disorder Subdivisions

  • None

General Discussion

Acute eosinophilic pneumonia (AEP) is a rare disorder characterized by the rapid accumulation of eosinophils in the lungs (pulmonary eosinophilia). Eosinophils are a type of white blood cell and are part of the immune system. They are usually produced in response to allergens, inflammation or infection (especially parasitic ones) and are particularly active in the respiratory tract. Common symptoms associated with AEP include progressive shortness of breath (dyspnea) of rapid onset, cough, fatigue, night sweats, low grade fevers, and unintended weight loss. AEP can rapidly progress to cause acute respiratory failure. The exact cause of the disorder is unknown (idiopathic) in many cases.

AEP was first described as a distinct entity in the medical literature in 1989. AEP is classified as a form of eosinophilic lung disease, a large group of interstitial lung diseases. AEP is different from chronic eosinophilic pneumonia (CEP), which is marked by slower progression, lack of progression to acute respiratory failure, frequent relapses and is often associated with asthma. For more information on CEP, choose "chronic eosinophilic pneumonia" as your search term in the NORD Rare Disease Database.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
1600 Clifton Road NE
Atlanta, GA 30333
Tel: (404)639-3534
Tel: (800)232-4636
TDD: (888)232-6348

NIH/National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute
P.O. Box 30105
Bethesda, MD 20892-0105
Tel: (301)592-8573
Fax: (301)251-1223

Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD) Information Center
PO Box 8126
Gaithersburg, MD 20898-8126
Tel: (301)251-4925
Fax: (301)251-4911
Tel: (888)205-2311
TDD: (888)205-3223

Campaign Urging Research for Eosinophilic Disease (CURED)
PO Box 32
Lincolnshire, IL 60069
Tel: (847)361-3292

Cincinnati Center for Eosinophilic Disorders
Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
3333 Burnet Avenue
MLC 2010
Cincinnati, OH 45229-3039
Tel: (513)636-2233
Fax: (513)636-9069
Tel: (800)344-2462
TDD: (513)636-4900

American Partnership for Eosinophilic Disorders
PO Box 29545
Atlanta, GA 30359
Tel: (713)493-7749
Fax: (713)493-7749

For a Complete Report:

This is an abstract of a report from the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD). A copy of the complete report can be downloaded free from the NORD website for registered users. The complete report contains additional information including symptoms, causes, affected population, related disorders, standard and investigational therapies (if available), and references from medical literature. For a full-text version of this topic, go to and click on Rare Disease Database under "Rare Disease Information".

The information provided in this report is not intended for diagnostic purposes. It is provided for informational purposes only. NORD recommends that affected individuals seek the advice or counsel of their own personal physicians.

It is possible that the title of this topic is not the name you selected. Please check the Synonyms listing to find the alternate name(s) and Disorder Subdivision(s) covered by this report

This disease entry is based upon medical information available through the date at the end of the topic. Since NORD's resources are limited, it is not possible to keep every entry in the Rare Disease Database completely current and accurate. Please check with the agencies listed in the Resources section for the most current information about this disorder.

For additional information and assistance about rare disorders, please contact the National Organization for Rare Disorders at P.O. Box 1968, Danbury, CT 06813-1968; phone (203) 744-0100; web site or email

Last Updated: 3/13/2012
Copyright 2012 National Organization for Rare Disorders, Inc.

WebMD Medical Reference from the National Organization for Rare Disorders

Last Updated: May 28, 2015
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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