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Print version ISSN 0121-0793


PALACIO-PETRI, Silvia; MORALES-MUNERA, Olga Lucía  and  ORTIZ-GIRALDO, Blair. Chronic pneumopathy secondary to swallowing disorder in a patient with mitochondrial myopathy. Iatreia [online]. 2019, vol.32, n.4, pp.321-327. ISSN 0121-0793.


Chronic lung disease secondary to dysphagia is a frequent complication in patients with neuromuscular diseases. Mitochondrial myopathies could lead to progressive lung damage due to chronic aspiration syndrome.

Clinical case:

Seven-year-old male with clinical and radiological signs of chronic lung disease, as well as low weight, weakness, dysphonia and multiplanar external oculoparesis. His father had similar symptoms during infancy and needed thickened liquid diet due to swallowing disorder. Dysphagia was confirmed as the cause of chronic lung disease and, therefore, hereditary congenital myopathy was suspected. Mitochondrial disease with chronic external oculoparesis was confirmed by molecular sequencing of the mitochondrial DNA gamma polymerase gene (POLG).


Neuromuscular disorders may cause chronic lung disease. Mitochondrial myopathy with progressive chronic external oculoparesis is associated with swallowing disorder in 50 % of the cases. Early diagnosis is important to slow decline in lung function.

Keywords : Deglutition; Deglutition Disorders; Lung Diseases; Mitochondrial Diseases; Mitochondrial Myopathies.

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