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Fever, breathlessness. Done removal of fluid from chest. Normal blood work. Expected for fluid to recur?

My sister age 71 has been a long time smoker.She recently became ill with fever and developed shortness of breath upon seeing a doctor she had a chest x-ray which found the right lung to be normal however the left lung had fluid around it that was pushing the lung up so that they could only see the top of it. A CAT scan was done there were no tumors seen. They removed 2 litres of fluid and put her on strong dosed of antibiotics . Her blood work came back normal. A week later she had a repeat chest x-ray and they found more fluid but not as much as before which they will remove in 4 days. There was no blood found in the fluid the first time but they still don t have the pathelogy report. If this is not cancer is it to be expected that she have this fluid recur?
Asked On : Tue, 25 Dec 2012
Answers:  1 Views:  17
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  User's Response
Considering her clinical profile, her age and smoking status, lung cancer cannot be ruled out especially if the pleural fluid has re-accumulated in a short time. You need to get the consultation of a pulmonologist. A pleural biopsy (either blind or through thoracoscopy) can be done, pleural fluid investigations should be sent and if required bronchoscopy can be done. Only after the results of investigations are available will the picture be more clear. Normally infective effusions do not recur in such a short duration.

Dr. Gyanshankar Mishra
Consultant Pulmonologist
Answered: Thu, 27 Dec 2012
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