British Lung Foundation
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Blood Clot on the lung

Hi, I wondered if somebody can answer me this question, yesterday I saw the chest doctor at the hospital.( I had a bad PE in Jan this year and spent 9 days in hospital) he told me that the bottom part of my lung died, this is the question does this mean dead as in dead or can it heal itself and that I have a small amount of scarring in the upper part near to the bit that reaches your heart. Sorry to sound so thick but I thought I understood him at the time but now it all seems mixed up. Thanks to everyone Julia

4 Replies

Hi darceynjo

Am sorry to hear about the PE an hope you are now feeling a lot better. A PE is a blood clot in the lung, if this clot cuts of the blood supply to an area of lung by blocking a blood vessel, then that part of the lung tissue will die, that is it is no longer able to work in the exchange of gases (carbon dioxide and oxygen) in your lung. The good news is that our lungs both of them together are more than enough to cope with the body's needs, so even if you lost a substantial bit of the functioning of one lung there is still more than enough organ left to help your body in the breathing process. But lung tissue that has died cannot regenerate. Hope this helps but if you are concerned then do get in touch with your specialist again they are well used to people not taking it all in the first time, we all do that at times and look like we are taking it in when really we are not.

take care



Hi Julia, I am not able to answer your question but as Joewarren suggests chat again with your consultant about this for further clarification, its difficult to know if the doctor's choice of words was to describe what had happened, was temporary or permanent.

Make your list of the things you need to clarify then contact the doctor concerned by phone or in writing.

All good wishes BC


I had repository Failure 5 years ago and was on an Oscillator for 12 days and another machine to keep me breathing for 18 days. But before they put 2 chest drains in they used large syringes and one time they took 120ml of fluid but it contained a 1cm blood clot. Once the drains went in they drained 3.5 litres of fluid that evening and 1 litre minimum a day there after. I had a major bleed at one point because my notes show a 6 unit infusion of whole blood and being ONeg, I thank all the donors,which I used be one.before my ills. I was told today that I have a lot of scaring on my lungs and the added heart condition will not help my breathing. but will not commit that it is my lungs until the cardiologist confirms this?


Hi there, it is all very worrying for you, as people have suggested I too think you should talk with your consultant again. I have questions for mine too...I have another appointment at the end of August. I am on 3 months antibiotics Doxycycline to clear a fungus in my lungs - nothing will heal the scarring of course, we all know we have to live with that. My breathlessness is going worse...the inhalers don't do anything but I have found the Vick inhaler stick very useful and it works in a couple of seconds to help you get a breath again. Like everyone else on here, I am worried sick about myself....but am walking every day and soon to be on a rehabilitation programme. I am going to have a go at Chi sounds easier than Tai and may do some good. Nice to be able to talk to folk on here, and all support one another.


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