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Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD)

Catamenial pneumothorax

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Catamenial pneumothorax is an extremely rare condition that affects women. Pneumothorax is the medical term for a collapsed lung, a condition in which air or gas is trapped in the space surrounding the lungs causing the lungs to collapse. Women with catamenial pneumothorax have recurrent episodes of pneumothorax that occur within 72 hours before or after the start of menstruation. The exact cause of catamenial pneumothorax is unknown and several theories have been proposed. Many cases are associated with the abnormal development of endometrial tissue outside of the uterus (endometriosis). Some believe that catamenial pneumothorax is the most common form of thoracic endometriosis (a condition in which the endometrial tissue grows in or around the lungs). A diagnosis of catamenial pneumothorax is usually suspected when a woman of reproductive age and with endometriosis has episodes of pneumothorax. Treatment is with hormones and surgery.[1][2][3]
Last updated: 10/13/2015


  1. Aikaterini N & cols. Catamenial pneumothorax. J Thorac Dis. 2014 Oct; 6(Suppl 4):S448–S460. Accessed 10/13/2015.
  2. Catamenial pneumothorax. WebMD. May 28, 2015; Accessed 10/13/2015.
  3. Azizad-Pinto P & Clarke D. Thoracic endometriosis syndrome: case report and review of the literature. Perm J. 2014 Summer; 18(3):61-5. Accessed 10/13/2015.
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Basic Information

  • The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) has a report for patients and families about this condition. NORD is a patient advocacy organization for individuals with rare diseases and the organizations that serve them.

In Depth Information

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  • The Monarch Initiative brings together data about this condition from humans and other species to help physicians and biomedical researchers. Monarch’s tools are designed to make it easier to compare the signs and symptoms (phenotypes) of different diseases and discover common features. This initiative is a collaboration between several academic institutions across the world and is funded by the National Institutes of Health. Visit the website to explore the biology of this condition.
  • Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man (OMIM) is a catalog of human genes and genetic disorders. Each entry has a summary of related medical articles. It is meant for health care professionals and researchers. OMIM is maintained by Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. 
  • PubMed is a searchable database of medical literature and lists journal articles that discuss Catamenial pneumothorax. Click on the link to view a sample search on this topic.
See Disclaimer regarding information on this site. Some links on this page may take you to organizations outside of the National Institutes of Health.