Is Surgery the Only Option for Pleural Effusions?

Is Surgery the Only Option for Pleural Effusions?

Is Surgery the Only Option for Pleural Effusions?

Surgery is far from the only option to treat pleural effusions, according to WebMD. A variety of non-surgical techniques can be used. Pleural effusion caused by a disease such as pneumonia, for example, may only take a course of antibiotics to clear.

Other ways to treat pleural effusions include thoracentesis, says MedlinePlus. This is a procedure in which a needle is inserted into the pleural space around the lungs and fluid is drawn out. The patient can also have a tube thoracotomy, in which a tube is put into the pleural space and fluid is suctioned out by a machine, indicates WebMD. Surgery is performed when there is a great deal of inflammation and necrotizing tissue.