UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Vascular

Title: Pulmonary Embolism Masquerading as Pneumonia

Keywords: Pulmonary Embolism, Pneumonia (PubMed Search)

Posted: 11/13/2007 by Rob Rogers, MD (Updated: 7/10/2020)
Click here to contact Rob Rogers, MD

Remember that PE can clinically look exactly like pneumonia:

Both can present with:

  • Cough
  • Pleuritic chest pain
  • Leukocytosis (WBC as high as 20-30)
  • Elevated temperature (as high as 105F!)
  • CXR that "looks" like pneumonia
  • Both can present acutely

Be afraid, be very, very afraid....