Has anyone ever dealt with horses that have pneumonia? I was just wondering how much fluid is generally drained from their lungs. I was checking online and couldn't find a ton of information on it. Just curious.
For instance, when my horse had pneumonia they put a tube in his chest and drained some kind of fluid (not sure exactly what it is) that had accumulated around his lungs.
This is from an article on pneumonia in humans, but also sums up what I was referring to in horses
"Pneumonia is an inflammatory illness of the lung. Frequently, it is described as lung parenchyma/alveolar inflammation and abnormal alveolar filling with fluid."
I could be wrong, but I don't see how the fluid in the lungs from pneumonia can be drained out. The fluid accumulates inside the thousands of little air sacs called alveoli - it would be quite a task to drain each one! I certainly haven't heard of it being done.
Are you sure your horse didn't have a pneumothorax or pleural effusion or something like that the time when he had a chest drain?
Yeah, I probably could have explained that a little better. The fluid actually accumulated around his lungs, putting pressure on them so that breathing became very difficult. To drain it they had to put a tube in his side.
Back to your original question: In people, there can be more than 1500ml of fluid surrounding the lungs if it is a severe case. So I suspect a horse could have up to several litres of fluid. I'm not sure though, I haven't had any experiences with horses with lung problems.