A practical approach to diagnosing pleural effusion in Southern Africa
CITATION: Bruwer, J. W., Batubara, E. & Koegelenberg, C. F. N. 2013. A practical approach to diagnosing pleural effusion in Southern Africa. CME, 31(9):320-325.
The original publication is available at http://www.cmej.org.za
Excessive fluid accumulating within the pleural space is a common medical affliction and invariably indicates disease. [1,2] Under physiological conditions fluid enters and exits the pleural space at the same rate. The rate of production is determined by Starling’s forces, i.e. hydrostatic pressure, osmotic pressure and membrane permeability, whereas the exit rate is determined by clearance through lymphatic drainage. Alterations in any of these forces can lead to the formation of a pleural effusion.