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A 36-year-old member asked:

would someone with mild atelectasis need to be hospitalized?

2 doctor answers7 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robin Larabee
Pediatrics 26 years experience
Not usually: Atelectasis alone would most often not require hosptializatoin . Atelectasis is a symptom/sign of many types of lung diseases/illnesses. The other parts of the illness may be more serious than the atelectasis, such as trouble breathing , hypoxia (low oxygen), cardiac complications, etc.
Dr. Sue Ferranti
Internal Medicine 29 years experience
No...: Mild atelectasis, especially without symptoms, can be treated as an outpatient. The most important treatment is deep breathing and an incentive spirometer can help with this. Ask your doctor for one if you don't have one. Good luck!

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A 35-year-old member asked:

How long does it take to recover from mild atelectasis?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Sunil Mehra
Pulmonology 44 years experience
Few hours to days: Depending upon cause, lung can open in few minutes(mucous plug etc) to days(pneumothorax).
A 40-year-old member asked:

How bad a complication is atelectasis to a post op patient?

1 doctor answer3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Bruce J. Stringer
Radiology 47 years experience
Very common but...: Atelectasis, a collapse of a portion of the lung, is very frequently seen in greater or lesser extent in post-op patients. Patients who have had surgery on their chest or abdomen frequently find it painful to take a deep breath or cough. As a result, lung secretions accumulate in the lungs and result in atelectasis. The atelectatic lung becomes a setup for development of pneumonia (bad!).
A member asked:

What is left lingular atelectasis?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Johnna Thomas
Family Medicine 28 years experience
Lung collapse: Dont panic, we all have cells in lungs at times that are not fully open, when you get a patch together we can see that on xray. Can be from old scars, pneumonia or other things like copd, or lung disease. You should be surento do deep breathing exercises, big breath in amd hold as long as you can, that opens the cells back up, and if on breathing treatment regimen then do them faithfully.
A 63-year-old male asked:

What does "minimal basal subsegmental atelectasis" mean and is it life threatening?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Michael Ein
Infectious Disease 48 years experience
NO: Failure to breath deeply for various reasons such as pain in a post operative patient can cause collapse of small areas of the lungs. This usually occurs at the bottom or bases of the lungs which is minimal basal subsegmental atelectasis. Using an incentive spirometer will resolve this minor condition. It is not life threatening in any way.
NY
A 55-year-old member asked:

What kind of breath sounds do you expect to hear in patients with atelectasis? What would very loud breath sounds indicate?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. James Ferguson
Pediatrics 46 years experience
Nothinng: With atelectasis, there is no lung space through which air travels to make sound. Other areas of lung may make enough noise to prevent the lack of air sounds to be noticed. Atelectasis is often dx'd by x-ray.

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Last updated Jul 12, 2018

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