Atelectasis : Causes - Symptoms- Diagnosis -Treatment

What is Atelectasis?

The lungs are two organs in your chest that help you take in air and deliver oxygen to your body. Atelectasis is the medical term for a collapse of one or more areas in the lung.

When you breathe in, your lungs fill up with air. This air travels to the air sacs in your lungs (alveoli) where oxygen is transferred into your blood. The blood then transports this oxygen to organs and tissues throughout your body.

If air sacs become deflated, it can cause problems with breathing. If too much of the lung is affected, your blood may not receive enough oxygen, which can lead to health problems.

What is Atelectasis?

A surgery may cause the air sacs in the lungs to become enlarged (atelectasis). This is not typically life-threatening, but in some cases it needs to be treated quickly.

  1. Respiratory system

  1. Nasal cavity

  2. Pharynx

  3. Larynx

  4. Trachea

  5. Bronchioles and smaller air passages

  6. Lungs

  7. Muscles of breathing

Medical terms

  • Atelectasis is a condition wherein the alveoli, or air sacs, in the lung become deflated and filled with fluid. This causes the condition to collapse and causes difficulty in breathing. It is most commonly caused by pulmonary diseases but can also be caused by an obstruction in the airway or as a result of surgery. In some cases, atelectasis can resolve on its own, but in more severe instances, medical intervention may be required in order to lessen the effects.

  • Atelectasis is a condition in which the alveoli, or tiny air sacs in the lungs, are partially collapsed. This can occur due to a blockage of the airway, a decrease in air pressure in the lungs, or an abnormality of the lung tissue that affects its ability to expand. Atelectasis can cause an oxygen deficiency in the bloodstream, which can lead to shortness of breath, chest pain, and fatigue. It can be an acute condition that requires immediate medical attention, or a chronic condition that is managed over time with lifestyle changes or medical treatments.

  • Atelectasis is one among the foremost common respiratory (respiratory) complications once surgery. It is also a doable complication of alternative metastasis issues, together with monogenic disorder, respiratory organ tumors, chest injuries, fluid within the respiratory organ and metastasis weakness. you'll develop pathology if you breathe a far off object.

  • Atelectasis will create respiratory trouble, significantly if you have already got respiratory organ illness. Treatment depends on the cause and severity of the collapse.

  • Atelectasis is the partial or complete collapse of a lung caused by the inability to inflate it This lung condition can occur in both adults and children Atelectasis occurs when one of two events takes place: air can't enter the lungs or air can't exit the lung once it's entered When a person has gasping syndrome related to atelectasis she experiences rapid breathing due to her body desperately trying to get fresh oxygen into her system When people have post-surgical atelectasis they experience a severe type of shortness of breath that makes it hard for

  • Atelectasis is the condition where air becomes trapped in a part of the lung This results in collapse of that part of the lung When it happens there is less room for oxygen to be able to travel through the lungs and into your bloodstream In some cases atelectasis can cause respiratory distress or failure Atelectasis generally occurs when a person experiences trauma from an injury or surgery but it can also be caused by allergies or infections in the chest It may affect one area of the lung or several areas at once.

When to see a doctor

Always obtain medical attention directly if you have got hassle respiration. different conditions besides pathology will cause respiratory difficulties and need associate degree correct diagnosing and prompt treatment. If your respiration becomes more and more troublesome, obtain emergency medical relief.

Symptoms and Causes Atelectasis

Atelectasis is the result of many causes. Any condition that makes it hard to take deep breaths or cough can lead to a collapse in the lung.

People may call atelectasis or other lung conditions "a collapsed lung." Another condition that commonly causes a collapsed lung is pneumothorax. Pneumothorax is the presence of air inside the lungs, which can cause the lung to collapse.

Causes Atelectasis:

  • Surgical procedures: Surgery is the most common cause of atelectasis. Anesthesia, medicines used to make you sleep during surgery, can affect your breathing and coughing. Pain after surgery can make deep breaths uncomfortable. If pain makes shallow breathing the only option, this can lead to atelectasis. When the air sacs in the leaves are deflated, the leaves become limp.

  • Chest pain: If there is pressure in the lungs from something outside of the body, it can make deep breathing difficult. This type of pressure can come from a tumor, an enlarged bone, or a tight brace or cast. If the cause of the pressure is not clear, your doctor will do additional tests to find out where the pressure is coming from.

  • A blocked airway can also lead to atelectasis. If the blocked area of the lung can't allow enough air in, this could lead to a collapse. The cause could be mucus or an inhaled object.

  • Other lung conditions: Other medical conditions that involve the lungs can also be associated with atelectasis. These disorders could include lung cancer, pneumonia, pleural effusions (fluid around the lungs), and respiratory distress syndrome (RDS).

What are the indications of atelectasis?

If atelectasis affects only a small area of the lungs, you may not experience any symptoms. But if it affects larger areas, the lungs cannot hold enough air and your oxygen level in your blood may drop. This can lead to uncomfortable symptoms, such as:

  • Trouble breathing (shortness of breath)

  • Increased heart rate

  • Coughing

  • Chest pain

  • Skin and lips turning blue

If you experience chest pain and difficulty breathing, it could be because of other conditions, such as asthma or emphysema. If you have these symptoms, you should see your doctor for an accurate diagnosis and the appropriate treatment.

Risk factors Atelectasis

Factors that make you more likely to develop atelectasis include:

  • Older age

  • Any condition that makes it difficult to swallow

  • Confinement to bed with infrequent changes of position

  • Lung disease, such as asthma, COPD, bronchiectasis or cystic fibrosis

  • Recent abdominal or chest surgery

  • Recent general anesthesia

  • Weak breathing (respiratory) muscles due to muscular dystrophy, spinal cord injury or another neuromuscular condition

  • Medications that may cause shallow breathing

  • Pain or injury that may make it painful to cough or cause shallow breathing, including stomach pain or rib fracture

  • Smoking

Is atelectasis serious?

Atelectasis occurs when air accumulates in the lungs and does not move out as it normally does Atelectasis usually results from the collapse of a portion of lung tissue that is covered by a flap called the pleural lining When the pleural lining pulls away from the lung which can be caused by pneumonia or other illnesses there is no longer any protection for that section of lung tissue preventing it from collapsing The condition may become serious if both lungs cease to function properly due primarily to an accumulation of fluid as well as oxygen deficiency resulting in insufficient levels needed to sustain life If atelectasis becomes chronic a person.

Is atelectasis reversible?

An atelectasis is a partial collapse of the lung that can occur after surgery or be caused by some other factors such as severe infection It can cause inflammation and the buildup of fluid which leads to respiratory problems such as pneumonia and pleurisy Atelectasis may also lead to progressive pulmonary fibrosis due to scar tissue deposition on the alveoli This condition is irreversible once it develops.

How is mild atelectasis treated?

Mild atelectasis is the most common type of pneumonia according to It occurs when a small area of your lung collapses and air is trapped there rather than being exchanged for new air as it should be Mild atelectasis can be treated using medications or cough suppressants to clear the lungs and assist breathing notes WebMD In more severe cases doctors use a chest tube to release pressure and drain fluid from the affected area of your lungs.

What type of atelectasis is the most common?

Paradoxical atelectasis is the most common type of atelectasis and accounts for about 80 percent of all cases In this case the lung is partially obstructed while the other part collapses As a result some parts of the lungs are being supplied with minimal amounts of oxygen causing symptoms such as coughing chest discomfort and shortness of breath The cause may be unknown or due to an obstruction in one or more bronchial tubes.

What does atelectasis mean on a CT scan?

Atelectasis is defined as “collapse of a lung or one of its lobes.” If you look at the chest x-ray or CT scan and you see areas that are flattened it’s probably due to atelectasis. This can be from having been in severe pain for weeks because of major surgery but sometimes it is due to pneumonia.

Can atelectasis cause back pain?

The atelectasis is a condition where the lung does not inflate completely causing its partial collapse This can occur in the morning after someone gets little sleep the night before It is also common among people who have recently undergone surgery which requires them to spend time lying on their backs after they leave the hospital Atelectasis is usually caused by coughing or by improper breathing exercises during physical rehabilitation sessions.

Diagnosis Atelectasis

Doctors diagnose atelectasis by performing X-rays and a CT scan. X-rays show the inside of your chest, while a CT scan can provide more detailed pictures.

In more serious cases, a doctor may perform a procedure called a bronchoscopy. This test involves sending a small tube called a bronchoscope down your throat to check for obstructions. The procedure is usually painless. If an obstruction is found, your doctor may be able to treat it. Remove the decoupaged leaf during the process.

Most cases of atelectasis (a build-up of fluid in the lungs) will go away without treatment. Your doctor will watch you carefully and may advise rest or other changes until the lung reinflated.

The treatment for more severe cases depends on the cause and extent of the collapse. The most common causes of atelectasis and their treatments can include:

  1. Lung ventilation-perfusion scan
  2. Pulmonary function test
  3. Bronchoscopy

    • After surgery, nurses or respiratory therapists will help you to practice breathing exercises and stand up as soon as possible.

    • Chest pain: Doctors can remove the cause of the pain with surgery or medication.

    • A bronchoscopy is used to remove a blockage in your airway. When this happens, you will be able to breathe freely again.

    • Lung condition: Doctors may treat the condition with medication or a procedure to reduce the pressure on your lung.

    Treatment Atelectasis

    Treatment of pathology depends on the cause. gentle pathology might get away while not treatment. Sometimes, medications area units wont to loosen and skinny secretion. If the condition is thanks to a blockage, surgery or alternative treatments could also be required.

    Chest physiotherapy

    Techniques that assist you breathe deeply once surgery to re-expand folded respiratory organ tissue area units are important. These techniques are the unit best learned before surgery. They include:

    • Performing deep-breathing exercises (incentive spirometry) and using a device to assist with deep coughing may help remove secretions and increase lung volume.

    • Positioning your body so that your head is lower than your chest (postural drainage). This allows mucus to drain better from the bottom of your lungs.

    • Tapping on your chest over the collapsed area to loosen mucus. This technique is called percussion. You can also use mechanical mucus-clearance devices, such as an air-pulse vibrator vest or a hand-held instrument.


    Removal of airway obstructions is also done by suctioning mucous secretion or by bronchoscopy. Throughout bronchoscopy, the doctor gently guides a versatile tube down your throat to clear your airways.

    If a tumor is inflicting the pathology, treatment could involve removal or shrinkage of the tumor with surgery, with or while not alternative cancer therapies (chemotherapy or radiation).

    Breathing treatments

    In some cases, a respiratory tube could also be required.

    Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) could also be useful in some areas that are too weak to cough and have low element levels (hypoxemia) when surgery.

    Prevention Atelectasis

    Breathing exercises and coughing after surgery can reduce your risk of developing atelectasis. If you smoke, quitting smoking can lower your risk of developing the condition. Many patients in the hospital are provided with a device called an incentive spirometer which can measure your breathing and coughing patterns. Breathe deeply to prevent and treat atelectasis.

    What is the outlook for people who have atelectasis?

    There are many causes of atelectasis, and most people recover quickly once the cause is treated. If the condition returns, further treatment may be needed.

    I can get helpful health and wellness information that is relevant to me.

    Preparing for your appointment

    Unless you need emergency care, you are doubtless to start out by seeing your GP or a MD. However, in some cases after you decide to line up a rendezvous, you'll be referred forthwith to a respiratory organ specialist (pulmonologist).

    Here's some data to assist you steel yourself against your appointment.

    What you can do

    • Write down any symptoms you're experiencing, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.

    • Note when the symptoms began and what you were doing at the time.

    • Make a list of all medications, vitamins or supplements you're taking.

    • Take a family member or friend with you to your appointment, if possible, to help you remember everything that is said.

    • Write down questions to ask your doctor.

    Questions to ask your doctor

    • What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?

    • What kinds of tests do I need?

    • What treatment do you recommend?

    • What are my treatment alternatives?

    • I have other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?

    • Are there any diet or activity restrictions?

    • Do you have any brochures or other printed material that I can take home with me?

    • What websites do you recommend?

    Don't hesitate to ask other questions during your appointment if you don't understand something or need more information.

    What to expect from your doctor

    Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions, including:

    • When did you start having symptoms?

    • Do you always have symptoms or do they come and go?

    • How severe are your symptoms?

    • Have you had a fever?

    • What, if anything, makes you feel better?

    • What, if anything, makes your symptoms worse?

    General summary

    1. Doctors may drain the fluid that has accumulated in the pleural space by inserting a needle through the skin If a patient has already received chest surgery doctors can use a chest tube to remove air or fluid from the pleural space If there is not enough room for air to escape the patient may need extra oxygen delivered directly into his lungs with a ventilator In rare cases when atelectasis occurs on one side of the lung doctors perform pleurodesis to block off any remaining connection between diseased and healthy parts of tissue within the lung In severe cases where patients have developed extreme difficulty breathing doctors surgically.

    2. Atelectasis is a condition wherein a part of the lung collapses, resulting in shallow breathing and difficulty breathing. It is characterized by air trapping in the alveoli, which is the smallest unit of the lung. The air that gets trapped in the alveoli causes the affected area to collapse, resulting in a decrease in airflow. Atelectasis can be caused by an obstruction in the airway, as well as diseases such as pneumonia and cystic fibrosis.

    3. Atelectasis is defined as a partial or total collapse of the lung The alveoli are the tiny air sacs in the lungs that enable it to transfer oxygen into the bloodstream and to remove carbon dioxide from it Atelectasis is caused by an obstruction in one or several of these ducts preventing air exchange with the blood stream This can be due to various kinds of diseases anatomical problems and more commonly due to mechanical factors like pressure on the chest etc.

    Next Post Previous Post