Causes of Pneumothorax

Causes of Pneumothorax

Fri, 15 Dec 2023

Causes of Pneumothorax

Pneumothorax can be caused by a chest injury, underlying lung disease, or ruptured air blisters (blebs). Pneumothorax also can occur for no obvious reason.

Chest injuries

Any blunt or penetrating injury to your chest can cause lung collapse. Some injuries may happen during physical assaults or car crashes, while others may inadvertently occur during certain medical procedures.

Examples of cause of Traumatic Pneumothorax:

  • Knife or gunshot wounds
  • Blunt trauma from a blow or car crash
  • Deployment of a vehicles air bag
  • Fractured ribs, which may puncture the lung
  • Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR)
  • The insertion of chest tubes
  • Lung biopsies were taken via a needle through the chest wall
  • Procedures using a scope down the throat and into the lung

Underlying lung diseases

Damaged lung tissue is more likely to collapse. Lung damage can be caused by many types of underlying diseases, including:

  • Emphysema
  • Tuberculosis
  • Pneumonia
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Lung cancer
  • Pulmonary fibrosis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Ruptured air blisters

Small air blisters (blebs) can develop on the top of the lung. Its uncertain why these blebs appear on some peoples lungs and not others, but they occur more often on the lungs of people who are tall and thin. Blebs themselves do not constitute a disease of the lungs. While most blebs rupture for no apparent reason, they can rupture from changes in air pressure during:

  • Scuba diving
  • Flying
  • Mountain climbing at high altitudes
  • Mechanical ventilation