(Water on the Lungs)
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- Heart failure or pericarditis
- Pulmonary embolism
- Liver disease
- Kidney disease
- A large shift in body fluids
- Having conditions or diseases listed above
Certain medications such as:
- Chest injury or trauma
- Radiation therapy
Surgery, especially involving:
- Organ transplantation
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Stomach discomfort
- Coughing up blood
- Shallow breathing
- Rapid pulse or breathing rate
- Weight loss
- Fever, chills, or sweating
To Support Breathing
- Breathing treatments—inhaling medication directly to lungs
- Oxygen therapy
Drain the Pleural Effusion
- Therapeutic thoracentesis —a needle is inserted into the area to withdraw excess fluid.
- Tube thoracostomy—a tube is placed in the side of your chest to allow fluid to drain. It will be left in place for several days.
Seal the Pleural Layers
- Thoracotomy —traditional, open chest procedure
- Video-assisted thorascopic surgery (VATS)—minimally-invasive surgery that only requires small keyhole size incisions
American Lung Association http://www.lung.org
National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov
Health Canada http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca
The Lung Association http://www.lung.ca
Drug-induced pulmonary disease. Merck Manual Professional Version website. Available at: http://www.merckmanuals.com/professional/pulmonary%5Fdisorders/interstitial%5Flung%5Fdiseases/drug-induced%5Fpulmonary%5Fdisease.html. Updated May 2008. Accessed March 5, 2013.
Explore pleurisy and other pleural disorders. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute website. Available at: http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/pleurisy. Updated September 21, 2011. Accessed March 5, 2013.
Pleural effusion. Remedy's Health Communities website. Available at: http://www.healthcommunities.com/pleural-effusion/overview-of-pleural-effusion.shtml. Updated June 1, 2000. Accessed March 5, 2013.
Pleural effusion—diagnostic evaluation. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated December 8, 2012. Accessed March 5, 2013.
Pleural effusion—differential diagnosis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated December 8, 2012. Accessed March 5, 2013
12/10/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Roberts M, Neville E, Berrisford R, Atunes G, Ali N, et al. Management of a malignant pleural effusion: British Thoracic Society pleural disease guideline 2010. Thorax. 2010;65 Suppl 2:ii32.
- Reviewer: Michael Woods, MD
- Review Date: 06/2015 -
- Update Date: 06/24/2013 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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