Postobstructive pneumonia in lung cancer
Postobstructive pneumonia can complicate lung cancer, particularly in more advanced stages of the disease, producing significant clinical decline and a poorer prognosis. It can lead to complications such as empyema, lung abscess and fistula formation. Postobstructive pneumonia can also be the first manifestation of an underlying malignancy. There are multiple challenges in the management of these patients. Recognition and treatment of this entity can be complex and includes the use of imaging, administration of broad-spectrum antibiotics to cover the wide variety of microorganisms involved and the use of different interventional modalities to relieve the obstruction. Existing literature on postobstructive pneumonia is scarce. In this article, we review the pathophysiology, different diagnostic methods and the therapeutic options to treat this condition. The utility and efficacy of the various modalities that are currently available in clinical practice to the interventional pulmonologist are described in some detail.