How can collapsed lung be prevented?

There is no way to prevent a collapsed lung, although the risk of its recurrence may be reduced. If you have experienced a spontaneous pneumothorax, another one is likely to occur within 2 years.

Here are some tips to prevent a recurrence.

  • Stop smoking: Smoking increases the risk of a pneumothorax, so patients are encouraged to quit.
  • Avoid air travel until 1 week after complete resolution has been confirmed by a chest X-ray.
  • Diving should be discouraged permanently unless a very secure definitive prevention strategy has been performed such as surgery.
  • Follow-up with your healthcare provider. If you have a respiratory disorder, schedule regular visits with your doctor.

Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 12/01/2013.


Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy