Lung Abscess

Lung Abscess:  Lung infection that is accompanied by pus accumulation and tissue destruction.  It often has a well defined border.  Anaerobic or aerobic bacteria can cause lung abscess.  Antibiotics has made the condition much less common now than formerly.  Poor oral hygiene with dental or gingival (gum) disease is strongly associated with putrid lung abscess.

Symptoms:

Cough - may produce bloody, purulent, or foul smelling sputum.

Pleuritic chest pain

Dyspnea (difficulty breathing)

Excessive sweating -Diaphoresis

Chills Fever

Headache

Malaise

Weight Loss

Crackles

Diminished breath sounds

Treatment:

Prolonged antibiotic therapy

Postural drainage may help discharge necrotic material into upper airways, where expectoration is possible.

Oxygen therapy may be needed

Poor therapeutic response requires resection of the lesion or removal of the diseased section of the lung. 

All patients need rigorous follow up and serial chest X-rays.

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