The following complications may result from atelectasis:
Jul. 14, 2012
- Low blood oxygen (hypoxemia). Atelectasis hampers your lungs' ability to get oxygen to the alveoli.
- Lung scarring. Some damage or scarring may remain after the lung is reinflated, resulting in bronchiectasis.
- Pneumonia. You're at greater risk of developing pneumonia until the atelectasis has been cleared. The mucus in a collapsed lung is a breeding ground for bacterial infections.
- Respiratory failure. A small area of atelectasis, especially in an adult, usually is treatable. But a large area, particularly in an infant or in someone with lung disease, can be life-threatening.
- Duggana M, et al. Atelectasis in the perioperative patient. Current Opinions in Anaesthesiology. 2007;20:37.
- Johnson MM, et al. Overview of the management of postoperative pulmonary complications. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed June 4, 2012.
- O'donnell AE. Bronchiectasis, Atelectasis, Cysts, and Localized Lung Disorders. Goldman L, et al. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191371208-2/0/1492/0.html#. Accessed June 4, 2012.
- Smetana GW, et al. Strategies to reduce postoperative pulmonary complications. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed June 6, 2012.
- Limper AH (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 6, 2012.
- Rosenow EC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 10, 2012.
- Stark P et al. Atelectasis: Types and pathogenesis in adults. http://www.uptodate.com/index. Accessed May 31, 2012.
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