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Left lung collapse, no trauma, no medical history

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1998
Answered : 1579 Questions
Hi i just come home from the hospital about 4 days ago from my left lung being 80% collapsed. My Dr. told me and my husband that it was normal for this to happen to a thin person,although he had never seen my situation I am a 30 year old active female with no health issues never been sick and I weight about 110lbs. He said that there was no cause for my lung collapesing that it was normal. I need to know is this true my lung for no reason just collapse while im driving to work? I just dont see this I would not think that it would be normal and just happen. Am I wrong for thinking this? It took 7 days and 2 different tubes to and a pump to get my lung back to 98% before I left the hospital. My life is very stressful I take care of 2 foster childeren that are teenagers and 2 younger children of my own I am an Assistant Manager for a large retail Supercenter and work about 14 or 16 hours a day for 3 days and rotate off 3 days could this have happened from stress maybe?
Posted Sun, 22 Apr 2012 in Lung and Chest disorders
Answered by Dr. Jasvinder Singh 23 minutes later

Thanks for posting your query. I can understand your concern and dilemma for the chain of events but yes, it is possible for a lung to collapse on its own without any medical condition or trauma to the lungs. It is called primary spontaneous pneumothorax and occurs in people without lung disease. It occurs most often in tall, thin, young people.

It will be very helpful for me in understanding your condition better if you could answer some of these questions:
1)     Do you have a history of smoking?
2)     Do you have any family history of spontaneous ling collapse (pneumothorax)?
3)     Is there any prior history of lung infection, pneumonia, tuberculosis or asthma?

Unfortunately there is a risk of spontaneous pneumothorax to happen again and to prevent this, first of all, smoking is to be stopped (if there is any history). Secondly pleurodesis can be done by video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS). This is a procedure to stick the lung to the chest wall. You can consult a chest physician or a VATS surgeon and discuss about this procedure.

Moreover you need to get a bronchoscopy and pulmonary function tests done to rule out any lung mass or lung conditions like asthma which can cause spontaneous pneumothorax to happen again.

Hope this answers your query. If you have additional questions or follow up queries then please do not hesitate in writing to us. I will be happy to answer your queries.

Wishing you good health.
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