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Have had bouts of bronchitis since quitting smoking. X-ray said bottom of left lung has collapsed. Can it be cured?

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Orthopaedic Surgeon
Practicing since : 1994
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I have been having bouts of bronchitis since I quit smoking 2 years ago. This one that I am having now, has really taken its toll on me. I went to the doctor this morning, and after an xray, I was told that the bottom of my left lung has collapsed onto itself. Is this from quitting smoking, or did this happen some time ago. Can it be cured, or is it going to lead to something else?

Thank you doctor XXXXXXX Kinnear
Posted Tue, 22 May 2012 in X-ray, Lab tests and Scans
Answered by Dr. Praveen Tayal 4 hours later
Thanks for posting your query.
The collapse of lung- one lobe usually occurs due to occlusion of a bronchus, causing a loss of aeration. The remaining air is gradually absorbed, and the lung loses volume.
Although there are many causes for collapse, the most likely cause in your case can be-
1. Collapse occurs secondary to mucous plugging of the major airways- due to chronic bronchitis. This usually responds to physiotherapy.
2. Proximal stenosing bronchogenic carcinoma, which occludes a bronchus. Patients are middle aged or elderly, and almost always smokers.
Proper investigations are needed to find out the exact cause. You can also start having physiotherapy sessions and respiratory exercises to get back the lost volume of lung.
I hope this answers your query.
In case you have additional questions or doubts, you can forward them to me, and I shall be glad to help you out.
Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.
Wishing you good health.
Dr. Praveen Tayal.
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