Pleural effusion


Fluid in the pleural cavity. Also called hydrothorax. It is caused by

  • Excess pleural fluid production

  • Reduced elimination of pleural fluid

It accompanies lobar pneumonia or tuberculosis of lung, pulmonary infarct, malignancy of the lung, cirrhosis of the liver, congestive heart failure, nephrotic syndrome and cirrhosis.

In pleural effusion, the percussion note is stony dullness.

It is pleural transudate in congestive heart failure, nephrotic syndrome and cirrhosis. It is purulent in bacterial lobar pneumonia, but straw colored in tuberculosis and pulmonary infarct and blood stained in malignant pleural effusion.

Other causes of pleural effusion

  • Malignancies

  • Collagen vascular disease

  • Subphrenic abscess

Pleural effusion clinical: Decreased chest movement, absent tactile vocal fremitus, percussion note stone dullness, no added sounds all on the left but bronchial breathing and pleural friction rub above the pleural fluid on the same left (apical).  Roll over mouse to display.




Introduction Pleural friction
Embryology Pleural effusion clinical
Histology Pleural effusion -imaging
Clinical anatomy Pleurisy
Anatomy Anterior pleural line
Lymphatic drainage of lung Accessory pleural fissure

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Electronic School of Medicine
Oluwole Ogunranti