Q. Being premature, am I more susceptible to lung disease?

Answered by
Dr. Divakara P
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Feb 08, 2017 and last reviewed on: Apr 21, 2021

Hello doctor,

I was born premature and required incubation for the first three months of my life. While in an incubator, I received oxygen daily for my lungs. I am now almost 30 years old. I have health anxiety, and worried that I am more susceptible to lung cancer or illness because of my premature birth and lungs. When I was 17, I randomly had a partial pneumothorax. It did not require surgery. I spent one night in the hospital on oxygen and then was discharged the next morning. I am tall and skinny, and they said this just happens to tall and skinny men. So, should I be concerned for now or later in life? Am I more susceptible to cancer and disease of the lungs? Is there any scientific data that points to this? I have not had anything wrong with my immune system or any other organs. I never smoked. Thanks in advance for your help.

#

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • Being premature and being on oxygen for the first few months does increase the risk of lung infection, that too in early years of life.
  • Now you are in 30, and I feel you have crossed the stage where you could have been at risk for infection and not for cancer.
  • I am more concerned about your feature being tall and skinny. This type of feature is seen in a condition called Marfan's syndrome (genetic disorder of connective tissue).
  • In Marfan's syndrome, spontaneous pneumothorax is common. Hence, I would recommend you to get examined by a doctor and ask him to check for features of Marfan's syndrome.

For further information consult a pulmonologist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/pulmonologist


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