The effect of atelectasis1 of a lung on the pulmonary blood circulation became particularly interesting with the introduction of pneumothorax in the treatment for certain types of pulmonary tuberculosis. The significance of this relationship has increased in importance with the development of thoracic surgery, because there are few, if any, surgical procedures within the thoracic cavity or involving the thoracic wall that do not affect the expansion of the lungs. In spite of many experimental studies, however, there is no uniform agreement as to the exact nature of the resulting circulatory changes. Different investigators have arrived at conclusions that are diametrically opposed to each other, and the present status of knowledge is at best confusing and nonconvincing.
The contradictory results are in part due to the fact that so far it has not been possible to determine by direct measurement the amount of blood that passes through a lung.
MOORE RL. THE VOLUME OF BLOOD FLOW PER MINUTE THROUGH THE LUNGS FOLLOWING COLLAPSE OF ONE LUNG BY OCCLUSION OF ITS BRONCHUS: EXPERIMENTAL OBSERVATIONS. Arch Surg. 1931;22(2):225–257. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1931.01160020048003
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