While most lung infections are addressed with prescription medicines, some cases require surgical intervention such as those where the patient has failed to respond to what has been prescribed or to remove a pocket of bacteria resistant to long-term medication.
A common condition that requires surgical intervention is the presence of a lung abscess. Lung abscesses may occur as a result of serious infection of the pulmonary parenchyma (bronchial passages in the lungs). This condition is determined through the use of a diagnostic procedure known as thoracoscopy. When necessary, surgical resection may address the abscess. A surgical procedure known as lung decortication may be necessary to drain infected fluid from the space around the lungs and free up the lung tissue that is trapped in scar and inflammation.
The duration of recovery is largely dependent on the specific procedure performed. Depending on whether the surgery was done to treat a lung abscess or an infection such as tuberculosis, a short hospital stay may be required in order to monitor for possible complications caused by the procedure itself or for shortness of breath or any other unwanted symptoms.