A lung abscess is a confined area of suppuration within the lung parenchyma. It is more common in alcoholics and in elderly, debilitated patients who are prone to aspiration, and in intravenous drug abusers. Males are affected slightly more often than females.
The incidence of lung abscess has declined in the recent past due to the greater efficacy of antibiotics in the treatment of lower respiratory tract infection, the universal use of endotracheal intubation in anaesthesia for dental extraction and tonsillectomy, and the decrease in childhood tuberculosis.
Last reviewed 01/2018