What is the relationship between a pneumothorax and atelectasis

what is the relationship between a pneumothorax and atelectasis

Atelectasis vs Pneumothorax. What is atelactasis and pneumothorax? Atelectasis is defined as the collapse of one or more areas of the lung. This occurs in patients with pneumothorax and pleural effusion. The diaphragm moves up and the normal relationship between left and right side gets altered. Pneumothorax is air in the pleural cavity shortly. There is air little or much in the pleural space, i.e. Potencial cavity between lung and wall of chest. Pleura is two.

That brown covering you can scrape off of the surface of the nut itself is like the visceral pleura. The inside lining of the hard shell can also be scraped off with your fingernail, and that's like the parietal pleura. Long story short, there should be no air in the pleural space. The absence of air in the pleural space establishes a pressure gradient within the chest that allows for lungs to inflate.

Collapsed Lung

But if air enters this space, the pressure gradient is broken. This means the lung is unable to expand against the pressure the air is exerting upon the lung from the pleural space.

what is the relationship between a pneumothorax and atelectasis

There are two main reasons for why air would find its way into the pleural space. The most easily understood explanation is introduction of the air from outside of the body.

Collapsed Lung | Atelectasis | Pneumothorax | MedlinePlus

For example, if a sharp object punctures your chest wall, it creates a hole through which air can enter into the chest. However, air can enter inside the pleural space from the lungs themselves. If, for example, mechanical ventilators force too high a pressure of air into the lungs, then this may cause one or more air sacs alveoli to burst open. In this case, the air entering into these air sacs as you breathe in will leak from the lungs and into the pleural space, resulting in a pneumothorax.

Shortness of breath, a. While clinical signs and obvious things, like gaping holes in someone's chest, are clues to a pneumothorax, a chest X-ray radiograph should be taken as well. It will reveal a lung that looks like it has shriveled from a big inflated balloon into a little deflated one.

Atelectasis - Wikipedia

This results in increased radiolucency, or darkness, on a radiographic film in the space where the lung should be inflated all the way up to in normal patients. Atelectasis is common in children who have inhaled an object, such as a peanut or small toy part, into their lungs.

Tumor inside the airway. An abnormal growth can narrow the airway. Possible causes of nonobstructive atelectasis include: Chest trauma — from a fall or car accident, for example — can cause you to avoid taking deep breaths due to the painwhich can result in compression of your lungs. This condition involves the buildup of fluid between the tissues pleura that line the lungs and the inside of the chest wall.

what is the relationship between a pneumothorax and atelectasis

Various types of pneumonia, a lung infection, can cause atelectasis. Air leaks into the space between your lungs and chest wall, indirectly causing some or all of a lung to collapse. Scarring of lung tissue. Scarring could be caused by injury, lung disease or surgery. A large tumor can press against and deflate the lung, as opposed to blocking the air passages.

Risk factors 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 Complications A small area of atelectasis, especially in an adult, usually is treatable.


The following complications may result from atelectasis: Low blood oxygen hypoxemia. Atelectasis makes it more difficult for your lungs to get oxygen to the air sacs alveoli. Your risk for pneumonia continues until the atelectasis goes away.

what is the relationship between a pneumothorax and atelectasis

Mucus in a collapsed lung may lead to infection. Loss of a lobe or a whole lung, particularly in an infant or in someone with lung disease, can be life-threatening.