Archive Of Standardized Exam Questions: Pneumocystis Pneumonia (PCP)


This page is dedicated to organizing various examples of standardized exam questions whose answer is PCP. While this may seem a odd practice, it is useful to see multiple examples of how PCP will be characterized on standardized exams (namely the boards and the shelf exams). This page is not meant to be used as a traditional question bank (as all of the answers will be the same), however seeing the classic “test” characterization for a disease is quite valuable.


Question # 1

45-year-old man comes to the hospital because of worsening shortness of breath, nonproductive cough, fever, and chills for three days. The patient developed liver failure due to Wilson disease about 8 months ago and recently underwent a liver transplant. He takes several immunosuppressants, including a steroid, but no antibiotics. The patient denies using any tobacco products, alcohol, or illicit drugs. His temperature is 102.1°F, his blood pressure is 116/72 mmHg, his pulse is 115/min, and respirations are 28/min. The patient’s oxygen saturation is 81% on room air. Exam is remarkable for bilateral crackles diffusely throughout the lung fields. The patient’s white blood cell count is 1300 per millimeter cute and serum LDH levels are 350 U/L. The patient receives a chest x-ray reveals bilateral diffuse interstitial infiltrates. What diagnosis must be considered in this patient?

Explanation: respiratory symptoms + immunosuppression (recent transplant) + bilateral diffuse interstitial infiltrates on X-ray = PCP


Page Updated: 02.09.2017