Thoracotomy: A surgery that enters the chest wall (thorax). Thoracotomy may be done to treat some serious lung conditions or to obtain a lung biopsy.
Video-assisted thorascopic surgery (VATS): Less-invasive chest wall surgery using an endoscope (flexible tube with a camera on its end). VATS may be used to treat or diagnose various lung conditions.
Chest tube (thoracostomy): A tube is inserted through an incision in the chest wall in order to drain fluid or air from around the lung.
Pleurocentesis: A needle is placed into the chest cavity to drain fluid that's around the lung. A sample is usually examined to identify the cause.
Antibiotics: Medicines that kill bacteria are used to treat most cases of pneumonia. Antibiotics are not effective against viruses.
Antiviral drugs: When used soon after flu symptoms start, antiviral medicines can reduce the severity of influenza. Antiviral drugs are not effective against viral bronchitis.
Bronchodilators: Inhaled medicines can help expand the airways (bronchi). This can reduce wheezing and shortness of breath in people with asthma or COPD.
Corticosteroids: Inhaled or oral steroids can reduce inflammation and improve symptoms in asthma or COPD. Steroids can also be used to treat less common lung conditions caused by inflammation.
Mechanical ventilation: People with severe attacks of lung disease may require a machine called a ventilator to assist breathing. The ventilator pumps in air through a tube inserted into the mouth or the neck.
Continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP): Air pressure applied by a machine through a mask keeps the airways open. It is used at night to treat sleep apnea, but it is also helpful for some people with COPD.
Lung transplant: Surgical removal of diseased lungs and replacement with organ donor lungs. Severe COPD, pulmonary hypertension, and pulmonary fibrosis are sometimes treated with lung transplant.
Lung resection: A diseased portion of the lung is removed through surgery. Most often, lung resection is used to treat lung cancer.
Vasodilators: People with some forms of pulmonary hypertension may require long-term medicines to lower the pressure in their lungs. Often, these must be taken through a continuous infusion into the veins.
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy: Lung cancer is often not curable with surgery. Chemotherapy and radiation therapy can help improve symptoms and sometimes extend life with lung cancer.