Public karaoke is a usually harmless activity that encourages people to shamelessly belt out their favorite songs in front of strangers. While most injuries from karaoke include hoarse voices and damaged eardrums, one man from China took things to the next level.
With gusto, he sang ten consecutive songs, all with high notes, resulting in a collapsed lung. After performing his songs, he began to suffer from chest pains and was having difficulty breathing.
Identified under the surname Wang, the man visited a hospital the next day where he was informed that his lung had collapsed. Apparently, the strain Wang put his lungs through while singing those high notes led one of them to collapse.
Wang’s condition is incredibly rare and would unlikely happen to someone else just from singing. Experts assume that Wang’s lung issues stem from a preexisting condition. Wang was diagnosed with a condition known as pneumothorax, which results in air building up between the lung and chest wall, leading to a collapse.
Lungs can collapse after a traumatic chest injury or can be caused by lung disease. In the case of the karaoke singer, he was healthy, and his injury was labeled as an anomaly, with no preexisting conditions.
According to Dr. Enid Neptune from John Hopkins School of Medicine, “Typically, a collapsed lung requires some degree of architectural abnormalities within the lung. An absolutely, totally normal lung usually doesn’t suffer spontaneous pneumothorax in the absence of trauma.”
These lung abnormalities are referred to as blebs or bullae, which are air pockets that can develop throughout someone’s life. When they get big enough, they can lead to a collapsed lung.