What are the Risks of Lung Biopsy?
Lung biopsy can lead to complications like breathing problems, collapsed lung, infection or bleeding.
The risk involved in the lung biopsy depends upon the disease condition of the lung from which the sample is to be taken.
Complications of lung biopsy include-
- Breathing problems- Patients with severe disease conditions of the lung may develop severe breathing problems during the biopsy procedure.
- Collapsed lung or pneumothorax - Lung biopsy procedure may lead to collapsed lung or pneumothroax (accumulation of air in the chest outside the lungs). In cases of a large pneumothorax, a tube must be placed in the chest to keep the lungs inflated and for the air to escape out through the tube. Partial collapse of the lungs may occur due to accidental tearing of the lung wall by the biopsy needle allowing the collection of air in the space outside the lungs. Signs of collapsed lungs are shortness of breath, rapid heartbeat, chest pain and bluish discoloration of the skin.
- Severe bleeding- Some bleeding is common after a biopsy. Rarely, severe and life-threatening bleeding may occur.
- Infection can occur after the procedure due to microbial contamination leading to pneumonia, which can be treated and prevented by giving antibiotics and keeping the biopsy site sterile after the procedure.
- Irregular heart beat
- Breathing impairment- Biopsy procedure may lead to spasms of the bronchial tubes causing breathing impairment.