Chủ Nhật, 13 tháng 10, 2013

Fluid in Lungs – Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Surgery

Fluid in Lungs – Symptoms, Causes, Treatment, Surgery

Fluid in Lungs Symptoms


Dependent on the medical problem, fluid in the lungs symptoms can suddenly appear or can slowly develop.


Symptoms and signs that suddenly develop can include:



  • Feeling of drowning or suffocating

  • Dangerous shortness of breath or/and trouble breathing

  • Anxiety, sense of apprehension, or restlessness

  • Gasping or wheezing for breath

  • Cough which creates frothy sputum and can be blood tinged

  • Pale skin

  • Excessive sweating

  • Chest pain, especially when the fluid in the lungs is causing cardiac problems

  • Irregular, rapid heartbeats known as palpitations


When an individual develops any of these symptoms – call 911 or seek medical emergency assistance immediately. Pulmonary edema may be fatal if not quickly treated.


Symptoms and signs that gradually develop, often because of heart failure, include:



  • Difficulty with breathing on exertion, usually when an individual is lying flat as opposite to sitting up

  • Having more shortness of breath than usual when an individual is physically active

  • Wakening during the night with a feeling of breathlessness that can be comforted by sitting up.

  • Rapid gaining of weight when fluid in the lung develops because of congestive heart failure, a condition where the heart pumps too little blood to meet the body’s needs. This weight gain is from the accumulation of fluid in the body, especially the legs.

  • Fatigue

  • Loss of appetite


Symptoms and signs of fluid in the lungs caused by higher-altitude normally include:



  • Insomnia

  • Headache

  • Cough

  • Fluid retention

  • Short of breath


Should fluid in the lungs come on suddenly, it is life-threatening. Obtain emergency medical assistance if there are any of the acute symptoms and signs listed:



  • A bubbly, gasping or wheezing sound when breathing

  • Feeling of suffocating known as dyspnea

  • Trouble breathing

  • Frothy pink sputum when coughing

  • Gray or blue tone to the skin

  • Breathing difficulty together with plentiful sweating

  • Drop in blood pressure that is severe

  • Sudden deteriorating of any of the symptoms linked with chronic pulmonary edema or high-altitude pulmonary edema


Do not try to drive yourself to the hospital. Rather, call 911 or emergency medical care and wait where you are for help.


Fluid in Lungs Causes


The lungs have numerous elastic, small air sacs referred to as alveoli. With every breath, these sacs take in oxygen as well as release carbon dioxide. Usually this interchange of gases will take place with no complications.


But in special situations, the alveoli fills with fluid rather than air and this prevents oxygen from being immersed into the blood system. Numerous things may cause this accumulating of fluid in the lungs, but most usually have to do with the heart or cardiac pulmonary edema.
Medical problems which can cause this left ventricle to be weak and to fail eventually include:



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Coronary artery disease
As time goes by, the arteries supplying blood to the heart can turn out to be narrow from plaques or fatty deposits. A heart attack happens once a blood clot develops in one of the narrow arteries, blocking the flow of blood and injuring the part of the heart muscle supplied by that precise artery. The rest of the heart will try to recompensate for this loss blood to pass thru the capillary walls into the air sacs.


Cardiomyopathy
When the heart muscle is injured by causes other than blood flow problems, the condition is called cardiomyopathy. Less common reasons include viral infections, alcohol abuse as well as the toxic matter of drugs such as heroin and other types of chemotherapy.


Heart valve problems
Sometimes the valves that regulate blood flow in the left side of the heart either do not open wide enough or do not close totally. This allows blood to flow backward thru the valve. Any problem with the left ventricle causes it to work harder and harder with each contraction. Since it is working much harder, the left ventricle will eventually thicken which puts greater stress on the coronary arteries. This increasing pressure extends into the left atrium and then to the pulmonary veins, causing fluid to accumulate in the lungs


Non-cardiac pulmonary edema
Not all pulmonary edema is caused by heart disease. Fluid can leak from the capillaries in the lungs’ air sacs due to the capillaries become permeable or leaky even without the buildup of back pressure from the heart. This is known as non-cardiac pulmonary edema due to the fact that the heart is not the reason for the problem.


Some factors of non-cardiac pulmonary edema include:



  • Lung infections

  • Kidney disease

  • Exposure to some toxins

  • Smoke inhaling

  • Acute respiratory distress syndrome or ARDS

  • Adverse reaction to drugs


High altitudes
Those living in or traveling to high-altitude locations as well as mountain climbers run a risk of developing high-altitude pulmonary edema or HAPE. This is a condition that normally happens at elevations above 8000 feet and also can affect skiers or hikers who begin exercising at higher altitudes without becoming acclimated. But even individuals who have skied or hiked at high altitudes in the past are not immune.


Fluid in Lungs Treatment


The aim of treatment is the reduction or eliminating of any excess fluid from the lungs as well as improving the functioning of the heart. Treatment is different for each individual when taking into account the cause of the disease. This problem can be life threatening if not treated. But before treatment it is necessary to identify the cause of the infection in order to begin the right intervention. The following are the recommended treatments for pulmonary edema:



  • High doses of oxygen using a face mask – this makes it easier to breathe

  • Certain medication such as diuretics, nitroglycerin, and morphine are used for treatment. Diuretics help to remove fluid accumulated in the lungs thru urination. Often morphine is given to improve the blood flow as well as the condition of the heart. Nitroglycerin decreases the amount of fluid entering the lungs.

  • Individuals with pulmonary edema which is severe might need to use a breathing machine for a long period of time.


Those diagnosed with pulmonary edema need to take medications correctly as well as on time. For this treatment to be effective, one needs to also maintain a healthy diet, reduce intake of salt, avoid smoking as well as excessive alcohol consumption. To reduce the risk of the condition, necessary safeguards needs to be taken in order to avoid further heart disease. This need to be done by following an exercise routine as well as a nutritious diet that is rich in vegetables and vitamins can prevent heart disorders.


Surgery and Fluid in Lungs


Fluid in the lungs is a complication that can occur as a result of any surgical procedure and is one of the most serious complications after surgery. This complication occurs in nearly 5% of general anesthetic as well as other major surgeries. Usually this occurs only in small amounts but it can also occur in extreme accumulations, occurring to such an extent that it interferes with the normal functioning of the lungs.


Below are precautionary measures to deal with fluid in the lungs after surgery:



  • After surgery, the lungs need to be active and exercised. This is done by breathing in air, holding it for as long as possible and then letting it out.

  • Be active as well as try to get back to normal movement activity as soon as possible.

  • If immunity is low, the physician might advise antibiotic to prevent the chances of contracting pneumonia













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