Pleural diseases

The chest also know as thoracic or pleuralcavity is a space that is enclosed by the spine, ribs, and sternum and is separated from the abdomen by the diaphragm. The chest cavity contains the heart, the thoracic aorta, lungs and oesophagus among other important organs. The wall of the chest cavity is made up of the rib cage and diaphragm. The chest cavity is lined by a thin shiny membrane called the pleura, which covers the inside surface of the rib cage and spreads over the lungs as well.  Normally, the pleuron produces a small amount of fluid which serves as a lubricant to the lungs as they move back and forth against the chest wall during respiration.

Hemothorax:  Accumulation of blood in the pleural cavity. Caused by Most chest trauma; other causes include pleural cancer and chest/heart surgery. Symptoms include Chest pain, shortness of breath, anxiety/restlessness, increased heart rate, respiratory failure if large
Pleural effusion:  Accumulation of excess fluid in the pleural cavity; this accumulation pushes against the lung and prevents full expansion with breathing. This is one of the most common problems associated with the pleura. Caused by Congestive heart failure, lung cancer, pneumonia, tuberculosis, liver disease, pulmonary embolism, lupus, adverse reaction to specific medications. A symptom includes May be asymptomatic or produce shortness of breath and cough
Empyema: The accumulation of pus in the pleural cavity. This is a type of pleural effusion that is usually associated with pneumonia. The symptoms are those of the pneumonia in addition to shortness of breath and impaired breathing.
Pleural tumors: Malignant tumors arising from the pleura or spreading to the pleura from another site, and benign tumors arising from the pleura. Symptoms include Shortness of breath, chest pain, cough, unexpected weight loss
Pleurisy: It is Inflammation of the pleura. Caused by Infection of the respiratory system by a virus or bacteria, leak of air into pleural cavity from a punctured lung, chest injury, tuberculosis or other infection, tumor in the pleural cavity, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, sickle cell crisis, pulmonary embolism, pancreatitis, complications from heart surgery Symptoms include Chest pain on taking a deep breath, shortness of breath, fever and/or chills, joint swelling and/or soreness, unexpected weight loss
Pneumothorax: Accumulation of air within the pleural cavity between the outside of the lung and the inside of the rib cage. Causes: Injury to the lung causing a leak of air, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or other lung disease, tuberculosis, ruptured air blisters, mechanical ventilation Symptoms include Shortness of breath, rapid breathing.


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