Pneumothorax - Treatment

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Were you hospitalized for your pneumothorax? What types of treatment did you receive, including medication?

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What is the treatment for pneumothorax?

A small pneumothorax without underlying lung disease may resolve on its own in one to two weeks. 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). In some cases, the leak does not close on its own. This is called a bronchopleural fistula, and may require chest surgery to repair the hole in the lung.

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See what others are saying

Comment from: anon, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: September 10

I developed a crippling pain in my right side from my chest to my shoulder. I was hospitalized, had a chest x-ray, and was diagnosed with pneumothorax, a 50% collapse. I was told to go home and return in 3 days for a follow up x-ray. On the journey to my second visit, the same thing happened on my left side. Another x-ray concluded a 30% collapse. I spent 2 nights in ICU with 40% oxygen which eased the breathing a lot. I was on codeine 60 mg and paracetamol. I am waiting for an operation appointment currently, for 2 operations over the space of a year. A CT scan shows smalls cysts at the top of the lung and a tiny one burst causing the pneumothorax.

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Comment from: Laury, 13-18 Female (Caregiver) Published: July 06

My daughter got sick quickly with sore throat and fever for a day. She has been diagnosed with allergy induced asthma. She has not had to have treatment in 6 years nor has she been on a preventative medication in that time as well. The doctor tested her for strep and could not get any breathing sounds out of her right lung. He stated he would like to have chest x-ray done but since my ex-husband does not carry insurance on our children he did not want to have that expense incurred on him. He stated since the strep test came back positive to prescribe the antibiotic that would both heal and cure the strep and any pneumonia that could possibly be. Three weeks later and with the full antibiotic taken she went for her recheck and he still could not hear full breathing sounds out of her right lung. She was not experiencing any difficulty breathing nor was she having any pain. He then sent her for a chest x-ray and they found she had a partially collapsed right lung. She did have to have the tube inserted as the oxygen did not pull the lung back up. The tube insertion was left in for minimal time and taken out and the final x-ray showed the lung was in normal position. My concern is that she did not have any symptoms of having a pneumothorax. I am waiting for the follow up visit with her primary doctor. But before I end this, I am not very happy with her father nor the doctor because I feel she should have had the x-ray at first checkup. Financial concern is not the doctor's concern, my child's health is.

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