Key messages

• Indications for draining pleural effusions include an effusion suspected of being infected, a hemorrhagic effusion, and an effusion which is causing ventilatory compromise.

• Thoracentesis should not be attempted unless fluid can be clearly localized by chest radiography, ultrasound, or CT scan.

• It is important to determine whether an effusion is recurrent or of new onset, or if there is a history of trauma. Traumatic effusions should be assumed to be hemothoraces, and should be treated with tube thoracostomy.

• The treatment of effusion varies depending upon thoracentesis: thick and purulent empyema requires tube thoracostomy; thinner parapneumonic effusions with low protein content, high pH, and high glucose content can sometimes be treated with antibiotics alone; multiloculated pleural effusions require surgical drainage and decortication.

• Symptomatic recurrent pleural effusions may require pleurodesis via chest tube, video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery, or open thoracotomy.

Healthy Fat Loss For A Longer Life

Healthy Fat Loss For A Longer Life

What will this book do for me? A growing number of books for laymen on the subject of health have appeared in the past decade. Never before has there been such widespread popular interest in medical science. Learn more within this guide today and download your copy now.

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