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Opacity in lung

Dear Ask The Doctor:
My father is 58years old.He smokes about 4 cigerrates a day.He has chronic cough.For the past 1 week,he has severe cough and slight fever.chest x ray showed a rounded opacity on left mid zone and obtuse costophrenal angle.ct scan is suggested.what does it indicate?what could be the reasons?and treatment?


I understand how concerned you are about your father’s lung opacity. This could be caused by different conditions; certainly the first test to guide the physicians about the probable cause of the lesion is an x-ray which lately could be completed by a CT scan. This test would give a better view and would rule out possibilities such as infections, atelectasis which is collapsed parts of the lungs and also cancer.
It would be very early to mention the probable diagnosis at this time, your father would need to have a better evaluation of his lung function by Spirometry, due to his history of smoking a probability of Atelectasis, Emphysema and chronic bronchitis at the top of the list and lastly and far from the list Bronchogenic Carcinoma might need to be ruled out.
Treatments would differ in one or other condition; I wish him a prompt recovery.

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