Medically the review by Judith Marcin, M.D. — created by the Editorial Team — updated on September 16, 2018

What is a lung consolidation?

Lung consolidation occurs as soon as the wait that commonly fills the little airways in your lungs is replaced with other else. Relying on the cause, the air might be changed with:

a fluid, such together pus, blood, or watera solid, such together stomach contents or cells

The figure of her lungs top top a chest X-ray, and your symptoms, are comparable for every these substances. So, you’ll typically need more tests to uncover out why her lungs space consolidated. With proper treatment, the consolidation usually goes away and also air returns.

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Lung consolidation on one X-ray

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Pneumonia shows up as a white consolidation ~ above a chest X-ray.

What are the symptoms?

Consolidation virtually always renders it difficult for you to breathe. Waiting can’t acquire through the consolidation, so your lung can’t do its job of bringing in fresh air and removing the air your body has used. This might make you feel brief of breath. It may also make your skin watch pale or bluish as result of a absence of oxygen. Other symptoms, depending upon the cause, can include:

a dried coughbreathing the sounds funny or is noisyfeverfatigue
What room the causes?

The causes of lung consolidation include:


Pneumonia is the many common cause of lung consolidation. When you have actually an epidemic in your lung, her body sends out white blood cell to struggle it. Dead cells and debris construct up producing pus, which filling the little airways. Pneumonia is usually because of bacteria or a virus, but it can also be brought about by a fungus or various other unusual organisms.

Pulmonary edema

Congestive heart failure is the most common reason of pulmonary edema. When your heart can not pump hard enough to relocate blood forward, that backs up into the blood vessels in her lungs. The boosted pressure pushes fluid from her blood vessels right into the little airways.

People who practically drown acquire pulmonary edema. In these cases, the liquid enters the airways from external their body instead of the inside.

Pulmonary hemorrhage

Pulmonary hemorrhage means you’re bleeding in your lungs. According to a review post in Tuberculosis & respiratory tract Diseases, this is most often caused through vasculitis, or inflammation of your blood vessels. This renders your blood ship weak and leaky, so few of your blood moves into the small airways.


Aspiration happens as soon as you breath food corpuscle or your stomach materials into your lungs.

Aspiration of food can cause pneumonia, but the infections room usually harder come treat than in simple pneumonia.

If you can’t swallow correctly, you’re much more likely to aspirate when you eat. If the swallowing problem isn’t fixed, you’ll continue to aspirate.

Stomach acid and other chemicals can reason inflammation and also irritate or injure your lungs, i beg your pardon is referred to as pneumonitis. You’re much more likely to acquire this if she in the hospital with a reduced level the consciousness. When your level of awareness improves, girlfriend no longer have actually a high risk of aspiration.

Lung cancer

Lung cancer is a common type of cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, lung cancer takes much more lives yearly than prostate, colon, and breast cancer put together. She much more likely to gain lung cancer if friend smoke.

A pleural effusion is a arsenal of fluid in the space between your chest wall surface and lungs. Favor lung consolidation, that looks favor white areas versus the darker air-filled lungs on your chest X-ray. Since an effusion is a liquid in a reasonably open space, it will usually move due to gravity when you change your position.

A lung consolidation may also be fluid, however it’s inside your lung, so it can’t move when you change positions. This is one way your doctor deserve to tell the difference in between the two.

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Some the the reasons of pleural effusions, such as congestive love failure, pneumonia, and lung cancer, likewise cause lung consolidation. So, it’s feasible for friend to have both at the same time.