To decrease atelectasis risk:

  • Be careful with small objects. Don't give children nuts until they are about 3 years old, when they have molars to more thoroughly chew nuts. And be careful about allowing young children to play with toys that have small, loose pieces.
  • Stop smoking. Smoking increases mucus production and damages the small, hair-like structures that line the bronchial tubes (cilia). Their wave-like motion helps carry mucus out of your airways.
  • Do deep-breathing exercises. After surgery, follow your doctor's instructions for frequent coughing and doing deep-breathing exercises.
  • Reposition yourself. If you must stay in bed, change your position frequently. Get up and walk as soon as you're able.
Jul. 14, 2012

You Are ... The Campaign for Mayo Clinic

Mayo Clinic is a not-for-profit organization. Make a difference today.