Pleurisy, X-ray

Pleurisy, X-ray

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This image is part of the sequence Healthcare: X-rays of a lung suffering from pleurisy before and after surgery to drain it

Credit: ZEPHYR/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Pleurisy. Coloured X-rays of the lungs of a 65 year old patient with pleurisy, an inflammation of the membranes (pleura) that line the chest cavity and lungs. In the left image, a large area of inflammation is obstructing the patient's right lung (white mass at centre left). Inflammation of the pleura leads to the lungs rubbing against the chest wall, which causes sharp pain on breathing. In this case, fluid had accumulated in the space between the membranes, causing breathing difficulties, so the lung needed to be drained to remove it. The right image shows the lung after drainage of the fluid. The underlying cause will also need to be treated, which may be a bacterial infection, viral infection, cancer or an embolism.

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