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Large Volume Pulmonary Lavage

Large volume pulmonary lavage is a procedure needed for patients having pulmonary alveolar proteinosis (PAP). This primary or acquired disease causes the lungs to fill with lipoproteinaceous fluid that cannot be cleared. A large amount of fluid is needed to flush the lungs (lavage) and clear the secretions.

Why is it used?

  • When PAP is severe enough, lung secretions increase and cannot be cleared
  • Large volume pulmonary lavage is performed while the patient is intubated and sedated
  • Several liters of saline solution is placed into the lungs through the breathing tube
  • This fluid is then suctioned and removed, which washes the secretions away

What Makes Large Volume Pulmonary Lavage Different?

  • In order to deliver several liters of fluid into the lungs to wash the secretions, this procedure requires a breathing tube and general anesthesia

Benefits of Large Volume Pulmonary Lavage

  • Although a rare procedure to perform, patients with severe PAP rapidly improve after this procedure is completed

Learn More About Large Volume Pulmonary Lavage

At UC San Diego Medical Center’s Interventional Pulmonology Unit, the following interventional pulmonologists specialize in performing large volume pulmonary lavage:

All referrals will still have the option of continuing their treatment with their primary care physicians after a large volume pulmonary lavage procedure.

For an appointment, for more information, or to find out how to refer a patient, please contact the Interventional Pulmonology Unit, 619-543-5840.

Interventional Pulmonology
UC San Diego Medical Center, 3rd Floor, South Wing
200 West Arbor Drive
San Diego, CA 619-543-5840