Pleural effusion is the expansion of fluid in the lungs. In most of the people it may develop due to cancer. Cancer cells spreads in the pleural cavity (layer between the lungs and the chest wall) creates a pleural effusion or fluid. When pleural effusion is related to cancer then it is said to be malignant pleural effusion
Diagnosis for Pleural Effusion Lung Cancer
The diagnosis of pleural effusion lung cancer depends on the mildness and severity of the condition. Treatment depends on the diagnosis. Diagnosis may help to find out the exact location of the fluid or to plan the treatments, the diagnosis is composed of physical inspection and doctors listen your lungs through a stethoscope, pleural fluid analysis or thoracentesis (removal of fluid from the pleural cavity), CT scan (Computed tomography), Chest X-ray (a picture of the fluid inside the body) and Ultra sound (an imaging test that is done by sound waves).
Pleural Effusion Lung Cancer Prognosis
The patients suffering from pleural effusion lung cancer generally have a lower survival rate. Prognosis in patients fluctuates by primary tumor. The median survival rate for the patients with lung cancer is counted as 3 months, and the patient with pleural effusion lung cancer is 9.4 months. Survival rate can be forecast by LENT prognostic score.
Causes of Pleural Effusion Lung Cancer
There are different medical conditions that can cause pleural effusion; excessive fluid may be gathering when the body is not able to handle due to any medical condition (kidney or liver disease). The common cause encompasses
- Lung infection (pneumonia)
- Low level of protein
- Kidney disease
- Liver problems
- Heart failure
Symptoms of Pleural Effusion Lung Cancer
Sometimes patients don’t show any symptoms and signs and it become complicated to inspect without test and clinical analysis, if you experience any symptoms talk to a specialist immediately. Common symptoms are
- Shortness of Breathe
- Chest pain and tightness
- Dry cough
Treatment for Pleural Effusion Lung Cancer
Treatment is done by means of different methods to drain the fluid from the pleural cavity. The doctors find out the trigger or medical conditions that is causing pleural effusion they first treat that condition by different antibiotics. Further treatments encompasses of
- Thoracentesis: It is done to drain the excess fluid from the pleural cavity with a needle or a small tube by inserting it in the chest cavity; this may improve symptoms and prevent the complications.
- Pleurodesis: It is executed when the excess fluid is drained out from the pleural cavity a substance (commonly talc) is injected in the areas that helps to stick the pleural cavity and chest cavity together which prevents the reverting of the excessive fluid.
- Chemotherapy: It is done for the treatment of cancer which helps to prevent the pleural effusion from reoccurring.
- Surgery: Surgery is required in very serious cases by inserting a small tube (shunt) in the chest cavity that helps to avert the fluid from the chest cavity to the abdomen where it can be removed easily.