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Atelectasis and Peribronchial Thickening in Lungs of a 3 yr Old

My 3 year old was born with asthma (full term, natural/vaginal delivery).  He has pneumonia every other month (since birth), he has also had bronchiolitis (without RSV), bronchitis, H1N1, and most currently RSV.  When he was two we removed his tonsil and adenoids in hopes to help his asthma symptoms.  While it did decrease the amount of sinus infections he had, it did nothing to help any other area.
He is on Advair, 115/21 two puffs twice daily, and Allegra (for unknown allergies).
He has had countless chest xrays, as well as a CT scan of his lungs (when he was two), which showed atelectasis and peribronchial thickening.  He was recently diagnosed with RSV (tested positive) his chest xray showed more cuffing, and no improvements in the areas of atelectasis.
Is this all normal in a child with asthma?  I have friends who have children with asthma and their xrays all generally look fine.  Whereas ours do not.  Can cuffing and atelectasis cause long term damage?  How long does it take for this to clear up?  What causes scar tissue?  Is it normal to have pneumonia as frequently as he does?  I do own a pulse oximeter, which I use to closely monitor his o2 (normally he is 96 or above, several times a week he does drop to 91-95), usually in addition to other symtpoms of clamminess, shortness of breath, frequent/persistant coughing.
4 Responses
710547 tn?1295446030
Hi, I've been reading your post and researching a bit to see if I can be of help, as your child sounds quite ill in his lower respiratory tract.  The RSV can be a serious virus in young children.  Were you told much about it?  Did the pulmonologist (hopefully you're seeing a specialist!) explain why he/she thinks your son was having these difficulties?  Usually a full term baby - even one with asthma doesn't have so many other respiratory disorders.  Do you or your partner have HIV or any other compromised immune system?  Is he around livestock?  Is he around a lot of tobacco smoke?  There IS a reason for the questions, but I know so little about his case, I wanted to get some background prior to saying much.

I do feel for you and your son and family and hope he gets stronger.  No - it isn't normal for someone to have the these issues with asthma.  Anytime there is significant inflammation in the lung, when it heals there can be scar tissue.  It can clear up completely, however, it all depends on the severity, the frequency, and the reason.

I have atelectasias, and right lower lung fibrosis w/ rt hemidiaphragmatic paralysis.  I get chronic aspiration of gastric contents when I sleep due to severe Gastroparesis and Scleroderma Esophagus (w/ Barrett's, and a lax LES) and no motility at all.  Gravity is how food gets into my stomach, but how it comes back up hours later - even when sitting up - when asleep - is quite strange.  But nerve damage and my long long list of diseases - I guess I should wonder when things DON'T happen.  MS, Systemic Sclerosis, Pulmonary Hypertension and Fibrosis - and on and on.  

You have your son to think about - just wanted to let you know I understand and would love to get info for you, if you'd like to fill in more information.  I send God's Blessings - He loves us all - especially children.  I'll be watching for more from you.

Avatar universal
Thanks for responding to my post.
TJ, my 3 yr old, is not around live stock, not around smokers, his dad (my husband) and I do not have compromised immune systems.  We have a family history of asthma and allergies, asthma on his side, allergies on mine.

He does see a pulmonologist at Children's Hospital (6 hr one way trip) who tells me his lungs just look like those of an asthmatic.  He sees kids who have problems alot worse than just asthma, so to him this is all normal, but to me it's not.  Our local drs say his lungs look terrible, I think because they don't normally see chest xrays like this.  

He was tested at birth for CF (cystic fibrosis), he was neg.  They looked into reflux, which he doesn't have.  They have not tested his immune system, so not sure there.
Avatar universal
Now he has a sinus infection.
Avatar universal
Your son is having All the same issues my 3 year old son has. He has has breathing problems since I stopped breast feeding at 14 months. He's been on puffers, singular, adavair u name it. Has had pneamonia 12 times, croupe 4. The doctors say he's chest X-rays are horrible he has had 5 X-rays. They removed tonsils and adniods. Finally they sent us to sick children's hospital were they did blood work, found out my son has an immune deficiency disorder IGA. He's immune system is weak n he catches everything. I get a cold, he gets pneumonia. The doctors say the X-rays are result of all the damage the previous infections have caused. Even tho we have an answer, the problem is not solved cause there is no way to treat IGA deficency, just the symptoms! Good luck to you n your son. N please have blood work done n check for immune deficencies.
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