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Pneumothorax is the abnormal collection of air in the pleural space. This can occur spontaneously, following trauma to the chest or as a side effect of a medical procedure. In most of the times, diagnosing pneumothorax is feasible via a standard chest radiograph. The management strategies for pneumothorax vary from watchful observation to medical and/ or surgical intervention. At initial management, the necessity of drainage of the pleural air is dictated by the symptoms a patient is exhibiting, the size of the pneumothorax and the state of the underlying lung. In cases where recurrence of pneumothorax is foreseen, further procedures are required to decrease the risk of such recurrence. The following review discusses the epidemiology, pathophysiology and clinical presentation of pneumothorax. It also summarizes the most recent guidelines on management with a view on the new strategies that have not been adopted in guidelines.

Original publication




Journal article


Minerva Pneumologica

Publication Date





235 - 248