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Lung diseases

Crying after having a hole in the lung

07/20/2009

Question:

after a newborn has recovered from a hole in her lung (3 1/2 days old) and can go home, is it dangerous for the baby to cry? Is there any risk of the hole being forced open again? Thank You.

Answer:

I believe you are describing either a pneumothorax, or pneumomediastinum - conditions which involve a small hole in the lung which allows air to "leak out" into places it shouldn't be.  

Just like a small "hole" or scratch on the skin (that briefly leaks blood) heals up and nearly disappears, the body is able to heal holes in the lungs. You don't have to worry about it breaking back open if the baby cries.

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Response by:

Elizabeth D Allen, MD Elizabeth D Allen, MD
Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University