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Collapsed lung-recovery time?

 
 
Wilso
 
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 01:19 am
I do have a reason for asking this question. If someone was admitted to hospital with a collapsed lung (not from a puncture or injury), does anyone have any idea how long they could expect to be in there? What could cause a collapsed lung in an otherwise healthy 35 year old non-smoker?
 
panzade
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 01:52 am
Good to hear from you Wilso. Are you the patient?
0 Replies
 
Wilso
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 02:13 am
No.
0 Replies
 
panzade
 
  2  
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 09:06 am
http://www.healthsquare.com/mc/fgmc0408.htm

The collapse or caving-in of all or part of a lung occurs when air gets into the area between the lung and the chest wall. If this happens, the lung cannot fill up with air as you take a breath. It may occur spontaneously without a known cause, often in healthy people. Medically, the condition is known as a pneumothorax (nu-mo-THOR-ax).


Causes

Often, collapsed lung is due to rupture of an air pocket or bleb (fluid filled sac) in the lung. Changes in pressure during diving, flying, or even stretching can cause a bleb to break. Asthma or infections in the lung also can cause a rupture.
Lady J
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 10:52 am
Panzade, you are a wealth of knowledge! I just learned something new myself. I have had a pneumothorax, but mine was from broken ribs puncturing the lung. I never even questioned that their might be other causes.

Perhaps you also know if every pneumothorax requires a chest tube or is the chest tube just used to drain fluids or blood from the lung? I know mine was a suction type device and kind of wondered if every pneumothorax automatically meant fluid in that lung.
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  1  
Reply Sun 7 Aug, 2005 01:10 pm
It can also be caused by a build-up of fluids in the sac surrounding the lungs. In a woman, this is sometimes indicative a reproductive cancer (particularly undiagnosed ovarian cancer) that has spread beyond the reproductive area into other organs, causing a buildup of fluids that push on the lungs.

I hope this does not turn out to be the reason for your friend.
0 Replies
 
bluefin
 
  2  
Reply Tue 23 Aug, 2005 10:10 am
Pneumothorax
A pneumothorax is collection of air or gas in the pleural space (the space surrounding the lungs). Pneumothorax can occur spontaneously ("out of the blue", with or without underlying lung disease), follow a fractured rib, occur in the wake of chest surgery, or be deliberately induced in order to collapse the lung. Smoking has been shown to increase the risk for
spontaneous pneumothorax.

Pneumothorax is commonly called collapsed lung. Each lung is covered by a membrane, called the pleura, that folds back to make a lining for the chest cavity. If air collects in the pleural space between the rib cage and a lung, the air causes part or all of the lung to collapse. Pneumothorax can occur for no apparent reason, called a spontaneous pneumothorax, or can be caused by injury. The most serious type is a tension pneumothorax, where the chest cavity fills with air and the extreme pressure causes the lung to collapse completely. Air can collect between the lung and chest wall can occur for different reasons. The main concern is that this abnormal air can compress the lung and cause breathing problems. In severe cases, a pneumothorax can cause death if it is not treated quickly.

Men who are tall, thin, and under the age of 40 are more likely to experience a simple spontaneous pneumothorax. A complicated spontaneous pneumothorax is more likely to occur in people with lung disease, such as emphysema, or lung conditions like asthma, cystic fibrosis, chronic bronchitis, tuberculosis, and certain types of pneumonia. Adults and infants who have severe acute respiratory distress syndrome and need the help of a mechanical ventilator to breathe are also more likely to develop pneumothorax.

A larger pneumothorax and a pneumothorax associated with underlying lung disease often require aspiration of the free air and/or placement of a chest tube to evacuate the air. Possible complications of chest tube insertion include pain, infection of the space between the lung and chest wall (the pleural space), hemorrhage (bleeding), fluid accumulation in the lung, and low blood pressure (hypotension). The high pressure oxygen pumped in by the ventilator can damage the lungs. People who suffer a serious chest injury in a motor vehicle accident or violent crime, undergo certain medical procedures that allow air into the chest cavity, or are middle-aged and have had long-term asthma, chronic bronchitis, or emphysema are more likely to have a tension pneumothorax.
0 Replies
 
Littlekos
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jun, 2009 01:50 pm
My 17 year old son suffered from a collapsed lung during a track meet. He had a chest tube inserted and was in the hospital for four days before his lung would stay inflated. I am wondering if it will be safe for him to run cross country, track and participate in water sports such a water skiing, scuba diving and snorkeling again?
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jun, 2009 03:28 pm
@Littlekos,
LittleKos, my BIL got a collapsed lung while diving. He was told to never dive again as if it happened again, it would be more serious and he might not survive it. Apparently it is also quite painful.
Littlekos
 
  1  
Reply Sun 14 Jun, 2009 09:15 pm
@Mame,
My son's doctor said to continue living and doing the things he loves but I am very concerned and scared. What you wrote makes sense about not diving. Were there other restrictions?
Mame
 
  2  
Reply Sun 14 Jun, 2009 09:23 pm
@Littlekos,
I'm not a doctor and I wasn't there when it happened. GET A SECOND OPINION. I don't think it's safe.
Littlekos
 
  1  
Reply Wed 17 Jun, 2009 08:58 am
@Mame,
Thanks Mame. The first doctor, the one who performed the tube procedure, said my son would not be able to scuba dive, fly or blow up balloons which would put undue pressure on the lungs. The second doctor said not to live in fear and my son should be able to anything he cares to except scuba diving. I should have asked about things a 17 yr. old might want to do like sky diving, roller coasters, rock climbing etc.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 17 Jun, 2009 10:11 am
@Littlekos,
You know, he's 17 and soon he'll be making his own decisions. Why not google "pneumothorax" and see what the prognosis is? You have had two opinions, and they only agree on not scuba diving. Sky diving would put just as much pressure on his lungs. I can't see a problem with roller coasters and rock climbing, myself, but I'm not a doctor. I think common sense is the way to go here. Just make sure you're both educated about it.
doglover28
 
  3  
Reply Sat 5 Sep, 2009 07:20 am
@Mame,
I just had a pneumothorax. My right lung was 75% collapased and I really had no idea. I am a 31 year old healthy non-smoking female. I had back pain in my upper right back- shoulder blade area-- and some shortness of breath, but thought I had allergies. Finally went for a chest x-ray. I had a chest tube inserted and suction for removing the air between my lung and ribcage. The lung then is able to reinflate itself and heal the hole on its own. In terms of moving forward-- the more you use it, the healthier it will be. Lungs need to be used, exercised, etc. So you are supposed to return to a normal active lifestyle. You are not supposed to fly, scuba dive, skydive for the first several weeks after it occurs, so that it fully recovers, but after that point, you have no limitations. The doctor told me the best thing I can do is return to running, swimming, etc. Good luck.
Phoenix32890
 
  2  
Reply Sat 5 Sep, 2009 07:33 am
@doglover28,
Damn- I had never heard of this condition, before I had it. I recently underwent aortic valve replacement, and developed a pneumothorax. I already had a chest tube inserted, so the docs just kept it in a little longer, until the pneumothorax corrected itself.

For a number of weeks, I had a pain in my shoulder, down in the "wing" in my back. I sort of suspected that it had to do with the pneumothorax. I had been given a spirometer in the hospital, but had stopped using it. Recently, a nurse told me that it is a good idea to keep up with it. Here is a picture of exactly what i have.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Incentive_spirometer
0 Replies
 
patinmaine
 
  1  
Reply Fri 18 Sep, 2009 11:08 am
My daughter-in-law, a non-smoking health conscious 40 year old, is in the hospital with a collapsed lung. She has a chest tube but the right lung is not inflating normally. She is in extreme pain from the chest tube and is on a narcotic patch, oral pain meds, blood thinner, IV anti-nausea (reaction to morphine) and IV anti-biotic. Plus having oxygen tube in her nostrils.

She's been in the hospital for 4 days already. What is the normal stay? The problem occured after a long air flight to Singapore. Should we be concerned that it is something more serious - I read that earlier post about possibly a sign of ovarian cancer.
kumimajava
 
  1  
Reply Sat 19 Sep, 2009 11:41 am
hi all,

i've just been released from hospital for 'home care' from what is now my third case of spontaneous pneumothorax... so perhaps I can assist a bit?

for the record, the first two cases were on the left lung; the first instance was treated with a pleural drain, the second (a year later) was drained and then operated. The third case (now - eight years after the first one) occurred on the right lung (for the first time), and was treated through 'aspiration' - with the doctor quoting a high chance of recurrence. For the pleural drain, I staid in hospital for around 4 days; the second time around, I left 3 days after the operation. This time, after the aspiration, they released me within 5 hours of the procedure.

As to recovery time, in each case the period of 'six weeks' was mentioned - no strenuous exercise, heavy lifting or airline travel before that. This recommendation comes from 3 different doctors, across 2 countries, so I would expect this to be relatively standard.

being young & stupid, after the first occurrence I started rowing about 4 weeks after leaving hospital, and had a lot of intermittent pain on the lung (but no re-collapse). if it is your first time recovering from a pneumothorax, it is likely that you'll worry quite often that your lung has re-collapsed, because of odd sensations inside your chest. One of the doctors explained to me that this is because after the lung is re-inflated, in places small pieces of scar tissue between the lung & the pleura may form, and these are 'sensitive' differently than the regular lung tissue. During the earlier part of the recovery, some of these 'connections' may be irritated, or even sever, which may causae occasional pain. it is relatively rare that a re-collapse of the lung would occur that soon after leaving the hospital (unless you've done something you shouldn't have - see above), but if you are worried, it's better to get it checeked out anyway.

In terms of 'prohibited activities' - in each case the doctors said 'you can forget about scuba diving ever' , and that was about it. I used to play the saxophone, and there was no medical recommendation against resuming that 'when I felt up to it, but no sooner than 3 months after recovery'. I also did some gliding as a hobby, and rowed at a relatively high (college) level and this didn't cause any problems. as with all recovery, the best way to come back is slowly and gradually...

good luck,
daniel
Miacat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Nov, 2009 05:23 am
My daughter aged 21 has had 2 collapsed lungs, the first November 2008 in her right lung, the second in May 2009 in the left lung. After the first collapse she was in hospital on a drain for 4 days. The second time she was transferred to a specialist hospital and operated on to "stick" it back, 2 days later the lung was completely blocked and not working, so they did an emergency fibroscopy in her room (pumping acid into the lung to break up the congestion) she said that frightened her more than the operation as she was fully conscious. Now she is back studying and taking part in high level sport (she is a fencer), she is very aware of her body, but says she accepts she will have a little pain from time to time and life must go on, she is determined to carry on although always aware of symptoms. After both collapses she was told not to dive ever, she thinks this a small price to pay if she can carry on with everything else as normal. As a family we have been to many place around the world and she would like to fly again, but mentally she feels too afraid to go, it is the only thing she is really afraid of now.
0 Replies
 
GlenFC15
 
  1  
Reply Thu 14 Jan, 2010 06:11 pm
@Littlekos,
i ,yself have had a collapsed lung at the age of 15, i am now 18, i play football for 2 teams, mens and under 18's. i can run fine, i can still do the things that i used to do before the operation etc. I spent 6 days in hospital with a pipe in my chest before Hull Royal Infirmary sent me to Leeds were they operated on me straight away. they said dont do any sports whatsoever until July (this was said in february) however, my urge for sports and wanting to just kick that football caused me to start playing football again in April! there was no problems whatsoever and im completly fine now.

The doctors said you cant deep sea dive (oh well i dont live swimming anyway!) they originally said you cant fly on an aeroplane but i dont fear this is true (i havent flown before anyway and probably wont do) and they told me you cant go no faster than 70mph in a car, which was a weird thign really as 3 months later i spent two laps in a ferrari enzo round a track going 140mph! plus ive drove myself in lessons down a motorway at 70mph so thats complete nonsense.

Your son shouldnt worry about running, if it is hard to breath for him then maybe consider asking for a scan, ct or something, just to check again. Diving shouldnt be done because of the pressure on the lungs etc but running, football, etc should be fine.

oh, one other thing that has effected me after my operation, when i fall over, like in football. before i would take the fall on the chest and be unharmed, now though, without realising, i fall and instantly turn to land on my shoulders, this is just instinctive now and i cant not fall, dive into water, or slide in water parks on my chest as its instinct now to turn away!
0 Replies
 
OwenCPT
 
  1  
Reply Thu 18 Mar, 2010 07:37 am
Hi all, I'm a 27 year old guy and have just had a spontaneous pneumothorax.

It was caused by a bleb on my right lung which ruptured in my sleep. I was hospitalized immediately and spend 5 days in hospital with a chest drain in for most of that time. Thoracic surgery ain't cool.

The surgeon told me they found a second bleb and removed both of them, he also said they were congenital and unavoidable. I'm active and a non-smoker, although I used to smoke in my early 20's.

I'm worried that I may have these bullae on my left lung, how can I ever know and what can I do to avoid this ever happening again?
 

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