Post-COVID lungs worse than worst smoker’s lungs, surgeon says

A Texas trauma surgeon says it’s rare for x-rays from one of his COVID-19 patients to return without dense scars. Dr Brittany Bankhead-Kendall tweeted that, “Post-COVID lungs seem worse than any kind of terrible smoker’s lung we’ve ever seen. And they collapse. And they clot. And the shortness of breath persists … and more … and again.”

“Everyone is so concerned about mortality and it’s terrible and horrible,” she told CBS Dallas. “But man, for all the survivors and the people who tested positive this is – it’s going to be a problem.”

She has treated thousands of patients since March.

Bankhead-Kendall, assistant professor of surgery at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, says patients who have had symptoms of COVID-19 have severe chest x-rays each time, and those who were asymptomatic show severe chest x-rays 70 80% of the time.

“There are still people who say ‘I’m fine. I have no problem, “and you shoot their chest x-ray and they have absolutely a bad chest x-ray,” she said.

In this photo of a normal lung, smoker’s lung, and COVID-19 lung that Dr Bankhead-Kendall shared with CBS Dallas, healthy lungs are clean with lots of black, which is mostly l ‘air. In the smoker’s lung, white lines indicate scarring and congestion – while the COVID lung is filled with white.

Lubbock, trauma surgeon at Texas Dr. Brittany Bankhead-Kendall.

CBS Dallas

“Either you will see a lot of these dense white scars or you will see them all over your lung. Even though you don’t have any problems now, the fact that it’s on your chest x-ray – it certainly indicates you may have problems later, ”said Bankhead-Kendall.

She said it was too early to know the extent of the impact of COVID-19 on your body or if the scars will heal, but it is important that if you experience shortness of breath after your COVID-19 has gone. , you keep in touch with your Primary Care Physician.

She adds: “There is no long-term implication of a vaccine that could ever be as bad as the long-term implications of COVID.”

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