Pleurocentesis: What Is It?

Pleurocentesis Pleurocentesis, commonly known as thoracentesis, is a procedure that is used to help remove excess air or fluid from the space between your lungs and the wall of your chest.

It is normal to have a small amount of air and fluid in the pleural space, but if the quantity of either of these things becomes too high, it can result in another condition called pleural effusion.

Pleural Effusion: Symptoms and Causes 

Pleural effusion occurs when there begins to be a buildup of excess air and fluid in the pleural space (the space between the visceral and parietal pleura around the lungs). This condition can become serious depending on the cause of the condition and whether or not your breathing is being hindered due to it.

Pleural Effusion Symptoms

  • Chest pain
  • Dry cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Inability to breathe unless sitting up straight

Potential Causes of Pleural Effusion

  • Heart failure
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Cirrhosis
  • Following open heart surgery
  • Pneumonia
  • Cancer
  • Kidney disease
  • Inflammatory disease

How Is Pleurocentesis Performed?

Pleurocentesis is performed in a hospital setting typically and involves injecting an anesthetic into the pleural space. After this, a needle will be inserted through the ribs using imaging from ultrasound to reach the pleural space. From there, the doctor will work to remove the fluid or air from the space. If it is requested by the doctor, a sample of the fluid may be sent to a lab for further testing.

Advantages of Pleurocentesis

  • It can help alleviate any symptoms of pleural effusion that you may be having (coughing, shortness of breath, and low oxygen levels)
  • Provides valuable information that can be used to diagnose a more serious problem that could be present
  • Ultrasound technology is used to make sure that the procedure is as precise as possible
  • It only requires local anesthetic

Get Your Pleurocentesis With Dr. Marc Bowen 

Dr. Marc Bowen at MXBowen Health and Breathing Center in New York, NY, is a pulmonologist who strives to provide his patients with a highly personalized experience. With his help, your pleurocentesis will go smoothly and get you results. If you are struggling with symptoms of pleural effusion and are interested in getting a pleurocentesis, call us at 212-480-4062 or fill out our contact form here to schedule your consultation with us.

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