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Pleural Effusion – Four More To Ask Your Doctor

 
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1. What line of treatment will be prescribed for me?
Your treatment will depend upon what medical condition has caused the pleural effusion to develop. However, the following steps are common for these specific types of pleural effusion:
• Intercoastal drainage of fluid through insertion (surgical) procedure. Therapeutic thoracentesis is called for only if the fluid collection is large and causing pressure and shortness of breath.
• Supplemental oxygen therapy
• Surgical or chemical pleuredesis may be needed to avoid recurrence of effusion. It involves scarring the two pleural surfaces to join together so that no accumulative space is available for fluids.

• Chemotherapy, radiation and surgery are required for those with malignant pleural effusions.
• Pleural effusions due to congestive heart failure require diuretics (water pills) and other medications that treat heart failure.
• Pleural effusions caused by infection call for antibiotics.

2. What are the possible complications that may appear in cases of Pleural effusion? Possible complications include:
• The infected pleural fluid may turn into an abscess.
• Possible collapse of lung due to excess fluid build-up.
• Recurrence and relapse
• Pneumothorax
• If the effusion is longstanding, there can be associated lung scarring and permanent decrease in lung function.

3. What are the steps to prevent Pleural Effusion?
Preventing the underlying medical condition that caused the pleural effusion will decrease the potential of developing an effusion.

4. What is the prognosis for Pleural Effusion?
Pleural effusion regardless of their cause, are a very serious and potentially fatal condition. They can be cleared if they cause of the effusion is treatable. Mortality rates for pleural effusion are high if the cause is an untreatable underlying medical condition such as malignant tumors, cancers etc that cause pleural effusions to develop.

ALL INFORMATION GIVEN IN THIS ADVOCACY SHEET IS TO BE CHECKED WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE IMPLEMENTING THEM OR TAKING THEM AS STANDARD OR VERIFIED.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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