New trends in the diagnosis and treatment in parapneumonic effusion and empyema.
Tuberk Toraks. 2008;56(1):113-20
Authors: Na MJ, Dikensoy O, Light RW
Despite treatment with antibiotics, patients with complicated parapneumonic effusion (PPE) and empyema have an increased morbidity and mortality due at least in part to inappropriate management of the pleural effusion. PPE should be considered in all patients with pneumonia as antibiotic therapy is being initiated. If the diaphragms cannot be seen throughout their length on the chest radiographs, a lateral decubitus radiograph, ultrasonography or computerized tomography scan should be obtained. If the effusion is more than 10 mm in thickness, a therapeutic thoracentesis should be performed. If the fluid cannot all be removed and the characteristics of the pleural fluid indicate a poor prognosis, a chest tube should be inserted. If the drainage is incomplete due to loculation of the PPE intrapleural fibrinolytics or thoracoscopy should be performed. If the lung does not reexpand completely with thoracoscopy, then decortication should be performed without delay.
PMID: 18330766 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]