Tram track (medicine)

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Tram-tracks, or the tram-track sign, are medical signs that bear some resemblance to tramway tracks.


When found in the lungs, tram-tracks are radiologic signs that are usually accompanied by pulmonary edema in cases of congestive heart failure and bronchiectasis. Tram-tracks are caused by bronchial wall thickening, and can be detected on a lateral chest X-ray.[1]


The term "tram-tracks" is also used to describe the basement membrane duplication found on light microscopy that is characteristic of membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis (MPGN) type I. (It is less commonly associated with types II and III.)[2]


The term has also been used to describe findings associated with optic nerve sheath meningioma.[3]

Tram track-shaped calcifications in the cerebral cortex indicate Sturge-Weber syndrome.


  1. ^ Gunderman RB. Essential radiology. 2nd ed. Thieme: New York.
  2. ^ Kaplan, Bernard S.; Meyers, Kevin E. C. (2004). Pediatric nephrology and urology: the requisites in pediatrics. Elsevier Health Sciences. pp. 151–. ISBN 978-0-323-01841-8. Retrieved 30 July 2011. 
  3. ^ Ramina, Ricardo; Aguiar, Paulo Henrique Pires; Tatagiba, Marcos (2007-11-29). Samii's Essentials in Neurosurgery. Springer. pp. 85–. ISBN 978-3-540-49249-8. Retrieved 30 July 2011.