Pleural manometry

John T Huggins, Peter Doelken
Clinics in Chest Medicine 2006, 27 (2): 229-40
The goals of therapeutic thoracentesis are to remove the maximum amount of pleural fluid to improve dyspnea and to facilitate the diagnostic evaluation of large pleural effusions. Pleural manometry may be useful for immediately detecting an unexpandable lung, which may coexist when any pleural fluid accumulates. Pleural manometry may improve patient safety when removing large amounts of pleural fluid. The basics of pleural space mechanics are discussed as they apply to the normal pleural space and to pleural effusion associated with expandable and unexpandable lung. This article also discusses the instrumentation required to perform bedside manometry, how manometry may decrease the risk of re-expansion pulmonary edema when large amounts of fluid are removed, and the diagnostic capabilities of manometry.

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