Diseases of the Pleural Cavity

2021-02-23 12:00 AM

Pleural effusion is the accumulation of fluid in the pleural cavity.


Pleural effusion is the accumulation of fluid in the pleural cavity.

  • Empyema refers to pus in pleural space.
  •  Chylothorax refers to chylous fluid in the pleural space secondary to obstruction of the thoracic duct, usually by the tumour.

Pneumothorax is the term used for air in the pleural cavity. It can be due to traumatic penetrating chest wall injuries or spontaneous rupture of apical blebs in typically tall young adults (spontaneous pneumothorax). The term tension pneumothorax is used if a life-threatening shift of thoracic organs across the midline occurs.

Haemothorax is the presence of blood in the pleural cavity. Trauma is a common cause. There may be hypotension and shift of the trachea to the unaffected side.

Chylothorax is lymphatic fluid in the pleural cavity. Malignancy is a common cause.