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Hello, could you please tell me the difference between atelectasis and bronchiectasia.
Best regards.

You can read the definitions of atelectasis and bronchiectasis in Wikipedia.
Atelectasis (from Greek asteles, incomplete, and ektasis, extension [1]) defines the collapse of pulmonary alveoli. Atelectasis can be caused by the blockage of a bronchus or by the entry of air into the pleura (known as pneumothorax). It can also be physiologic in the days following the birth, before alveoli expansion and the elimination of the amniotic fluid. In the first case, the blockage makes the air disappear from the alveoli, causing them to collapse. In the second case, the entry of air into the pleura (due to a wound in the chest, for example) causes detachment of the lung from the thoracic cavity; Once detached, the lung retracts by the elasticity of its tissues.

The collapsed alveoli are devoid of their ventilation while their blood perfusion persists. This is characterized by unequal ventilation-perfusion ratio due to a blood shunt, say a contamination of the correctly oxygenated arterial blood of the ventilated areas (high PaO2 and CaO2, low PaCO2) by non-oxygenated blood from non-ventilated areas (PaO2 and CaO2 low, PaCO2 High). Their main determinant is bronchial obstruction or compression. Atelectasis accompanies multiple respiratory conditions, but can also occur on healthy lungs. Their causes determine the extent of the pulmonary territories affected by atelectasis, which may range from a limited area to a complete lung. The clinical consequence of atelectasis is hypoxemia, the severity of which is correlated with the collapsed pulmonary volume.

Bronchiectasis or dilation of the bronchi is a chronic condition, usually acquired as a result of bronchial, lung or pleural disease. It is characterized by dilatation of the small and medium caliber bronchi and is often accompanied by an abundant mucopurulent expectoration due to an associated infection. They can be localized or diffuse.
An obstructive syndrome develops. A mixed ventilatory disorder (decreased total lung capacity and decreased Tiffeneau's ratio (FEV1 / FVC) in spirometry) is more common.

Hope this answer can help.
Best wishes
Gilles RAULT, MD, Roscoff CF Center