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Doctor insights on: What Does It Mean When Collapsed Lung

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Why does only one lung collapse in spontaneous pneumothorax?

Why does only one lung collapse in spontaneous pneumothorax?

Great Question: And I have a better answer: unlike the american bison, most mammals have two separate pleural or lung cavities. If one lung collapses, the problem does not usually affect the other side. This is why bison were easy to hunt. If you hit one side of the chest, both lungs could collapse. The picture shows human anatomy, wish I could also post a bison picture as they are majestic creatures. ...Read more

Lung (Definition)

Deoxygenated blood enters the lungs from the right side of the heart and travels to the lungs. When you inspire, oxygen flows into the lungs, transverses the capilliares and attaches to hemoglobin down a gradient. At the same time, co2 diffuses into the capilaries and is expelled with exhalation. Oxygen rich blood then flows to the left side of the heart and into the ...Read more


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Can one have small collapsed lung with few symptoms. Could this spontaneous collapse be deadly? Some studies say that progression to tension is rare.

Can one have small collapsed lung with few symptoms. Could this spontaneous collapse be deadly? Some studies say that progression to tension is rare.

Lung collapse: Unlikely. Pain and shortness of breath. Spontaneous pneumothorax would be rare at your age. Exertion related in your age group. Better to just go get a chest x-ray ...Read more

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I have a collapsed lung but no pain. Does this mean it's permanant?

Atelectasis: Atelectasis (collapsed lung) can be caused by 4 ways. 1.Blockage of the airway. 2. Compression of the airway. 3.Adhesion, a sort of scaring of the lung. 4.Hypoventilation, failure to get enough air in the airway Depending on the cause will determine if it will resolve. ...Read more

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What to do if collapsed lung but no pain does this mean its permenant?

What to do if collapsed lung but no pain does this mean its permenant?

Investigate: Best not to leave lung collapsed if possible. Need bronchoscope and possibly Ct or MRI to evaluate cause of collapse and decide on solution. May be simple as allowing air outside lung to be absorbed and reexpand lung by breathing exercise or may need drainage by catheter or even scope surgery to get lung re-expanded. ...Read more

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Aunt has lung cancer, having chemo, rushed back to hospital throwing up blood. I've been told good sign, means collapsed lung re-inflating. Any advise?

Aunt has lung cancer, having chemo, rushed back to hospital throwing up blood. I've been told good sign, means collapsed lung re-inflating. Any advise?

Who said this?: If the doctor treating her right now said this was a good sign, then it likely is. Only the doc who's treating her for this now can give a decent idea. Unless the doc has communicated this to another doc or family member. Maybe this sounds like a reasonable answer to vomiting blood to another doc, but it does not make a lot of sense to me. But, sometimes we don't remember all we were told exactly ...Read more

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Collapsed lung recovery?

Collapsed lung recovery?

Patience: Chest tube drainage/evacuation will often resolve pressure imbalance instantly. The hole in the lung from trauma or spontaneous collapse can potentially seal in just a few days (like a scab). The lung tissue takes longer to fully heal, depending on type of injury. If from trauma, associated chest wall injury (rib fractures, etc...) as well as chest tube site may take weeks to months to heal. ...Read more

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Is a collapsed lung bad?

Is a collapsed lung bad?

Yes: A collapsed lung means that the lung cannot do it's job, bringing oxygen into the body and getting rid of carbon dioxide. ...Read more

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How bad is a collapsed lung?

Bad: Pneumothorax, hemothorax, chylothorax, hydropneumothorax and atelectasis all emcompass conditions where a lung is "collapsed." in atelectasis, the lung is not aerated because alveoli are not expanded. This is usually an issue internal to the airways. The rmainder are due to something outside the actual lung parenchyma - compressing the lung. All are bad, so talk to your doc. ...Read more

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How can I cure a collapsed lung

How can I cure a collapsed lung

Need more info: "collapsed" lung is a term that can mean several different things. Collapsed lung can mean a pneumothorax which is treated with a chest tube, or a collapsed lung can mean an obstructed bronchus which is treated, when possible, by removing the obstruction. ...Read more

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What can cause a collapsed lung?

Multiple: External and internal. External causes are trauma, diagnostic procedures, etc. Internal factors deal with an increase in pressure in the lung, causing rupture of a pre- existing issue (pulmonary bleb). Pressure increases can be a cough, sneeze, or being on a ventilator. Air leaves the lung or enters the chest through a defect, causing collapse of the lung. ...Read more

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When to fly after collapsed lung?

When to fly after collapsed lung?

Discuss MD: Until surgical evaluation and/or treatment, refrain from flying and scuba. With guidance/instructions from your surgeon, it is generally safe to travel by commercial airline after your pneumothorax is fully resolved (~4weeks). If your lung is currently "collapsed", i.e. Your pneumothorax has not resolved, you should refrain from air travel, skydiving, high altitude travel, and scuba diving. ...Read more

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Can you die from a collapsed lung?

Can you die from a collapsed lung?

Tension pneumothorax: You can die from collapsed lung, as it progresses quickly to a tension pneumothorax. Eventually, the pressure will collapse your other lung and vessels. Untreated, death will occur. First responders, emt and trauma providers are trained to recognize and release the pressure associated with a collapsed lung, to prevent tension pneumothorax. ...Read more

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How does one treat a collapsed lung?

How does one treat a collapsed lung?

Negative pressure: You can die from collapsed lung, as it progresses quickly to a tension pneumothorax. First responders, emt and trauma providers are trained to recognize and release the pressure associated with a collapsed lung, to prevent tension pneumothorax. A chest tube is inserted into the space between your lung and chest wall. The tube is put to negative pressure, so lung can re-expand. ...Read more

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Do I know if I have a collapsed lung?

Do I know if I have a collapsed lung?

Maybe not: Estimated at least 10% spontaneous pneumothorax are asymptomatic. Symptoms if present may include shortness of breath, cough, and/or chest pain. The first line of diagnosis for large pneumothorax is a good history and physical examination (stethoscope). Most smaller pneumothoraces can be diagnosed with good 2 view chest x-ray series. Occasionally, a ct-scan may be necessary. ...Read more

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How does the dr fix a collapsed lung?

How does the dr fix a collapsed lung?

Find out the cause: Need to find the cause first for the collapse-pleural effusion, pneumothorax, endobronchial tumor--etc. Appropriate intervention depending on the cause. ...Read more

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What does a collapsed lung feel like?

What does a collapsed lung feel like?

Breathing pain: Though mechanisms of injury play a role here, both traumatic and spontaneous pneumothorax (collapsed lung) will lead to shortness of breath and chest pain. If left untreated, some may lead to tension pneumothorax which may be deadly. If you see the patient turning pale and taking shallow, frequent, gasping breaths - there is not a minute to waste. ...Read more

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What are the tests for collapsed lung?

Chest X-ray: Chest x-ray is most often utilized test. If the diagnosis still remains uncertain, occasionally, a chest ct scan can be performed. ...Read more

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What can be done for a collapsed lung?

Chest tube: Typically, the first line of treatment for a collapsed lung is to insert a chest tube, which is a tube that is placed between the ribs and outside of the lung, in order to allow the lung to re-expand. If the lung is only partially collapsed, sometimes this is not necessary. Occasionally, surgery will be required to treat the problem. ...Read more

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Can a collapsed lung improve on its own?

Can a collapsed lung improve on its own?

Yes: A healthy normal person with no particular risk factors, can get a spontaneous pneumothorax (collapsed lung). If the amount of air that leaked out was small, and the leak had sealed itself off, the doctor may decide to observe the patient and let the leaked air get reabsorbed by the body. ...Read more

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What sort of disease is a collapsed lung?

What sort of disease is a collapsed lung?

Lung collapse: A collapsed lung can be spontaneous and associated with a variety of diseases (emphysema for example or alpha-1- antitrypsin deficiency) or traumatic. Various conditions can result in which if untreated the lung may remain collapsed or produce a tension pneumothorax demanding emergent treatment. ...Read more

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What are the symptoms of a collapsed lung?

What are the symptoms of a collapsed lung?

Short of breath/Pain: The most common symptoms are acute onset of chest pain and shortness of breath. If this were to occur you should seek immediate medical attention and have a chest x-ray to diagnose the problem. ...Read more

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What happens if you have a collapsed lung?

Collapsed lung: A collapsed along can be a medical emergency. Typically the attempt is to expand the long using a chest tube. This is usually done in intensive care setting. With proper care it can easily be really expanded and sealed. There is a risk, however of reoccurrence ...Read more

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Could someone recover from a collapsed lung?

Could someone recover from a collapsed lung?

Absolutely: The hole in the lung from trauma or spontaneous collapse can potentially seal in just a few days (like a scab). The lung tissue takes longer to fully heal, depending on type and extent of initial injury. If from trauma, associated chest wall injury (rib fractures, etc...) as well as chest tube site may take weeks to months to heal. ...Read more

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Could I fly with a partially collapsed lung?

Could be risky: It depends on the type of "collapsed lung" that you have. But, when flying, there are definite pressure changes that can affect a collapsed lung. So, I would make sure it is ok with your doctor. ...Read more

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How to determine if u have a collapsed lung?

How to determine if u have a collapsed lung?

Examination: Estimated at least 10% spontaneous pneumothorax are asymptomatic. The first line of diagnosis for large pneumothorax is a good history and physical examination (stethoscope). Most smaller pneumothoraces can be diagnosed with good 2 view chest x-ray series. Occasionally, a ct-scan may be necessary. ...Read more

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How could I know if I have a collapsed lung?

How could I know if I have a collapsed lung?

Examination: Estimated at least 10% spontaneous pneumothorax are asymptomatic. Symptoms if present may include shortness off breath, cough, and/or chest pain. The first line of diagnosis for large pneumothorax is a good history and physical examination (stethoscope). Most smaller pneumothoraces can be diagnosed with good 2 view chest x-ray series. Occasionally, a ct-scan may be necessary. ...Read more

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Can I have a collapsed lung, how can I know?

Symptoms: A collapsed lung will usually present with shortness of breath and chest pain, although not always so. Exercise intolerance may occur, as well as cough. If you are concerned, you should be seen by your doctor and request a chest x-ray. ...Read more

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How do you know if you have a collapsed lung?

Collapsed lung: A collapsed lung often causes chest pain and difficulty breathing. A chest xray should confirm the diagnosis. If you know someone who has this it is important to seek help immediately. ...Read more

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Why has my partially collapsed lung remained?

Why has my partially collapsed lung remained?

Collapsed lung: Depends on the cause of the collapse. Many time lung gets trapped and collapsed, and requires decortication to allow expansion. ...Read more

Dr. Loki Skylizard
307 Doctors shared insights

Spontaneous Pneumothorax (Definition)

The collection of air or gas in the space inside the chest around the lungs, which leads ...Read more


Dr. David Dang
244 Doctors shared insights

Atelectasis (Definition)

Collapse of a lung or part of a lung from ...Read more