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Pulmonary Nodules

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:

What are pulmonary nodules?

Pulmonary nodules are areas of abnormal tissue in your lungs. Nodules are usually found when a chest x-ray or CT scan is ordered for other health conditions. Most nodules are not cancerous. However, it is still very important for you to return for follow-up testing so your condition can be monitored.

What increases my risk for pulmonary nodules?

  • Previous lung infections or surgeries
  • History of smoking
  • Exposure to asbestos

What are the signs and symptoms of pulmonary nodules?

You may not have any symptoms. You may have chest cold symptoms that do not improve, such as congestion, cough, chest pain when coughing, or shortness of breath.

How are pulmonary nodules treated?

Your healthcare provider will refer you to a pulmonologist. You may need follow-up testing for at least 1 to 2 years so your nodules can be monitored for any change or growth. If you have a history of smoking or a family history of lung cancer, your pulmonologist may order more scans or request a biopsy.

How can I reduce my risk for lung cancer?

Do not smoke. If you smoke, it is never too late to quit. Smoking increases your risk of lung cancer. Ask your healthcare provider for more information if you need help quitting.

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

  • You have chest cold symptoms that do not get better.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

When should I seek immediate care or call 911?

  • You cannot think clearly.
  • You suddenly feel lightheaded or are short of breath.
  • Your lips or nails look blue or pale.
  • You have chest pain when you take a deep breath or cough.
  • You cough up blood.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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