Episode #42 High Truths and Chris's Popped Lung from Pot

Episode 42 October 11, 2021 00:29:06
Episode #42 High Truths and Chris's Popped Lung from Pot
High Truths on Drugs and Addiction
Episode #42 High Truths and Chris's Popped Lung from Pot

Oct 11 2021 | 00:29:06


Show Notes

Chris Pneumothorax

What is a popped lung?  It is called called a pneumothorax and a collapse of a lung – like a popped balloon.

Is a serious and potentially life threatened problem because the lung is not working causing lack of oxygen.  It can even progress to a tension pneumothorax which is a restriction on the heart preventing it from beating normally.

Chris’s Chest X-ray

 Chris came to the emergency department with chest pain on August 2020, in the midst of a pandemic. He was taken straight to the COVID section of the emergency department as medical staff dressed in helmets, masks and gowns treated him for possible COVID.  His chest x-ray told a different story.  His diagnosis was pneumothorax from marijuana use. Anxiety and isolation during the pandemic increased his marijuana use by smoking with a bong and by vaping.

The right side of the X-ray picture is Chris’s normal left lung. It has white hazy marking throughout the properly inflated lung going from top to bottom of the rib cage. Think of the lung as a balloon that is inflated. The left side of the X-ray represents Chris’s right collapsed lung.  The balloon has popped. The dark, blacker area is air with no lung. The white hazy part of the lung close to the midline and away from the outer rib cage is the collapsed, deflated balloon. The collapsed lung takes up only a small section of the total chest area and does not expand throughout the entire field as it should.

It not uncommon to suffer pulmonary barotrauma associated with deep inhalation and holding the breath while using marijuana. It happens with vaping, inhaling a joint or bong.

Chris was treated with a chest tube that reinflated his lung. He has not smoked since this happened to him. Chris is an intelligent high functioning young man who read about harms of smoking during a pulmonary pandemic but also read about possible immune benefit of marijuana. He admits to having an addiction and reading sources that supported his habit.

Thank you Chris for bravery in sharing your story. You will be educating others about the reality of marijuana use.

Learn more about pulmonary issues with cannabis in the IASIC library,  the International Academy on Science and Impact of Cannabis.



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