What Does Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis Mean?

Atelectasis is a condition characterized by the lung collapse. The collapse of the lungs may be either full or partial. The capacity of the lungs to transfer the oxygen to the blood is severely reduced in atelectasis. The condition of complete collapse of the lungs is a serious condition and requires immediate medical attention. Atelectasis is caused due to variety of reasons and the treatment depends upon the cause of the disease. The approach of the treatment is to identify and treating the underlying condition.

What Does Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis Mean?

What Does Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis Mean?

Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis is the condition in which the lowest lobes or the inferior lobes of the lungs mildly collapse. As the lowest lobes of the lungs get collapsed, the alveoli situated in these lobes could no longer exchange the gases from the blood. The mild bibasilar atelectasis, even after treatment may reduce the overall capacity of the lungs.

Causes of Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis

There are various causes due to which mild bibasilar atelectasis may happen. Following are the causes:

Bronchial Obstruction. The bronchial obstruction is one of the most primary reasons for atelectasis. The blockage may be due to mucus production or obstruction due to foreign object. Further, the obstruction may also be due to tumor. If there is any bleeding in the lungs, a clot is formed which leads to blockage in the lungs leading to collapse.

Post-operative. The atelectasis may also occur as an aftermath of the surgery. This may be due to the use of anesthesia or the patient might be suffered from irritation in diaphragm.

Injury. The condition may also be caused due to injury in the liver. This may be due to paralysis of the respiratory muscles.

Infection. The infective condition in the lungs may also lead to lung collapse. This may be due to a reflex nervous stimulus.

Surfactant Deficiency. The surfactant is present on the lining of the lungs and is responsible for the proper functioning of the lungs. When the surfactant is not present in sufficient amount, it may lead to lung collapse.

Pulmonary Scars. There are certain scars which are developed in the lungs due to surgery of certain chemicals which are accidentally inhaled. These can damage the lungs and eventually lead to atelectasis.

Medications. Certain medications, when used in large amount, may cause lung collapse.

Symptoms of Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis

The symptoms are mostly related to the fact that blood is no longer supplied with enough oxygen. This results in the following symptoms:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue as oxygen is not provided to cells for energy production.
  • High heart rate and high blood pressure
  • Cough
  • Shallow and intensive breathing.

The symptoms in fully collapsed lungs are more severe as compared to partially collapsed lungs.

Treatment for Mild Bibasilar Atelectasis

The treatment of the mild bibasilar atelectasis is directed to treating the underlying cause due to which there is lung collapse. Following are the treatments followed depending upon the underlying cause:

Blockage. If the mild bibasilar atelectasis is due to blockage, the route is made clear by removing the blockage. The blockage may be removed by drainage or mechanical suction. If the mucus is thick, then mucolytic agents are used to remove mucus.

Infection. If the mild bibasilar atelectasis is due to the infection in the lungs, then the antimicrobial therapy is required to manage the infection. Once the infection gets treated, the lungs will come in natural shape.

Tumor. When the mild bibasilar atelectasis is caused due to malign tumor, then the tumor should be removed either by surgery or through chemotherapy. The decision should be taken quickly so as to prevent further damage and to prevent the tumor from metastasizing.

Surgery. In many cases the mild bibasilar atelectasis is caused due to surgery. In those cases, exercises are recommended such as walking or the use of incentive spirometer.


Mild bibasilar atelectasis develops when the lower lobes of lungs get mildly collapsed. The reason for this collapse is many and the treatment of atelectasis depends upon the root cause of the disease. Through better care and quick medical intervention, the condition is reversible. In many cases the condition may become serious and aggressive treatment is required.

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