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URBANA ATLAS OF PATHOLOGY

Image Number 24 - Lung, congestion, passive and acute

This is an example of the histological appearance of the lung in heart failure. As the left ventricle fails it is unable to keep up with the outflow from the right ventricle. Thus the lungs become congested with "stagnant" blood. Over time, pulmonary hypertension developes and the right ventricle also fails, resulting in passive venous congestion of the liver and other areas of the body. Heart failure is a very common cause of clinical morbidity in the U.S. In this particular slide note the "heart failure cells" seen as the large brown cells grouped in the upper left of the screen. These are macrophages that have taken up the heme of the hemolysed RBCs in the congested lung.

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