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Postgraduate Education Corner: PROCEDURE VIDEOS ONLINE |

Pleuroscopy for Diagnosis and Therapy for Pleural Effusions

Gaetane Michaud, MD, FCCP; David M. Berkowitz, MD; Armin Ernst, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

From Interventional Pulmonology and Thoracic Surgery (Drs Michaud and Ernst), Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, and the Department of Medicine (Dr Berkowitz), Emory University, Atlanta, GA.

Correspondence to: Gaetane Michaud, MD, FCCP, Interventional Pulmonology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, One Deaconess Rd, Deaconess 201A, Boston, MA 02215; e-mail: gmichaud@bidmc.harvard.edu


Editor’s Note: In this series, the article is intended to complement a video, available in the online version of this article at: http://chestjournal.chestpubs.org/content/138/5/1242.full

Reproduction of this article is prohibited without written permission from the American College of Chest Physicians (http://www.chestpubs.org/site/misc/reprints.xhtml).


© 2010 American College of Chest Physicians


Chest. 2010;138(5):1242-1246. doi:10.1378/chest.10-1259
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Pleuroscopy, also known as medical thoracoscopy, is a minimally invasive procedure to inspect and perform a biopsy of the pleural space as well as to perform therapeutic interventions. It differs from conventional video-assisted thoracic surgery in that it may be performed under moderate sedation in the endoscopy suite without the need for intubation or single-lung ventilation. The diagnostic accuracy of this procedure approaches 100% in malignant and tuberculous pleural effusions. Complication rates are low (2%-5%) and are typically minor (subcutaneous emphysema, bleeding, infection), with mortality rates <0.1%. Therapeutic interventions, such as chemical pleurodesis, may be performed during pleuroscopy for recurrent, symptomatic malignant pleural effusions, with success rates approaching 90%. In trained hands, pleuroscopy is a safe and well-tolerated procedure with high diagnostic accuracy and therapeutic efficacy.


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Pleuroscopy and Diagnosis of Pleural Effusions

Running Time: 17:31

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