Interventional Radiologist Questions Lung Cancer

How to get rid of fluid in the lungs?

My mom has stage 4 lung cancer and her lungs are filled with fluid. Can it be removed? is it a dangerous procedure?

6 Answers

Fluid can be removed with a variety of tubes, but frequently in order to keep it from coming back the lining of the chest cavity needs to be removed surgically with a procedure called a pleurectomy. Your mother should consult with a Thoracic Surgeon for more precise direction
Yes it is relatively safe. Sometimes a tube can be placed to drain any extra fluid that still builds up.
Removing fluid from the lungs is a straight forward procedure and usually uncomplicated. If she continues to re-accumulate fluid, there are certain types of tubes that can be left in place to help the fluid drain.
It can safely be removed with a procedure called thoracentesis. IF it is filling up because of her cancer, it can be removed by a longer-term tube that physicians like myself (Interventional radiologists) can put in. Both are safe procedures.
Yes they can drain the fluid in radiology with a drain but only necessary if she is symptomatic (short of breath). Not that dangerous. Minimal risk. Always a risk of lung collapse but rare and if it does occur relatively easy to fix.
Yes, fluid can be removed from the lungs with a needle. It is a common procedure and relatively safe. It would make her more comfortable as she’ll breathe better.