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Elevated Glucose in Pleural Effusion*: An Early Clue to Esophageal Perforation

Khalid F. Almoosa, MD, FCCP; Noel Wardell, MD; Shahrokh Javaheri, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

*From the Department of Internal Medicine, Veterans’ Affairs Medical Center (Drs. Almoosa and Javaheri), Cincinnati, OH; and Kaiser Sunnyside Medical Center (Dr. Wardell), Cincinnati, OH.

Correspondence to: Shahrokh Javaheri, MD, FCCP, Pulmonary Section, 111F, VA Medical Center, 3200 Vine St, Cincinnati, OH 45220; e-mail: javaheri@snorenomore.com



Chest. 2007;131(5):1567-1569. doi:10.1378/chest.06-2843
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Esophageal perforation is a rare cause of pleural effusions that carries with it a high mortality rate if diagnosis is delayed. The chemical characteristics of the pleural effusion include high amylase and low pH levels. However, these variables are nonspecific. We present a case of pleural effusion in a patient with markedly elevated glucose levels from recent cola ingestion as a specific clue to the diagnosis of esophageal perforation.

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