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Lung diseases

Lung Scar After TB Treatment

05/21/2010

Question:

Is there any way to prove that what you have is only a scar after 6 months treatment of TB? everytime I tried to have an x-ray radiologist always have a possitive reading...Is it possible for the scar to be removed?

Answer:

Usually the scar on the CXR after you have been treated for proven TB is persistent, and we anticipate that if you take your medications as prescribed, don't have any symptoms (fever, weight loss, cough, etc.) and finish the treatment, that you should be protected against getting TB again from the initial infection.

Since the scar usually represents only the residual lung injury from the TB and there is risk of removing that part of the lung (as there is with any chest procedure), this is usually left alone.

For special circumstances, that part of the lung can be removed.   Bleeding from that part of the lung and persistent infection with resistant organisms are two reasons to consider removing that part of the lung.

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Response by:

Clay B Marsh, MD Clay B Marsh, MD
Vice Dean of Medicine Administration
Professor of Molecular Virology, Immunology & Medical Genetics
Professor of Veterinary Biosciences
Associate Vice President of Health Sciences Research Administration
College of Medicine
The Ohio State University