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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 58  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 76-80

Etiology, clinical characteristics, and management of pleural effusion in Ilorin, Nigeria

1 Department of Surgery, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Nigeria
2 Department of Child Health, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Nigeria
3 Department of Medicine, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Nigeria
4 Department of Medical Microbiology, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, Ilorin, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Olufemi Olumuyiwa Desalu
Department of Medicine, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, PMB 1459, Ilorin
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0300-1652.219349

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Background: Pleural effusion (PE) is a primary manifestation or secondary complication of many disorders. This study reviews the pattern and management of PE in a Nigerian hospital. Materials and Methods: The medical records of 213 patients with clinical diagnosis of PE over a period of 3 years were reviewed. Results: PE accounted for 0.5% of the total hospital admissions. The most common cause of PE was tuberculosis (TB) (32.9%), followed by malignancy (29.1%) and pneumonia (15.0%). The male to female ratio was 1.3:1. TB was the leading cause of effusion in males, while it was malignancy in females. Pneumonia accounted for 61.9% of PE in preschool age and 66.7% in school age. Breathlessness (50.0%), cough (39.4%), and chest pain (24.9%) were the common presentations. Most (90.1%) of them were exudative effusion and with half in the right lung. Chest radiography (91.6%), pleural fluid for Ziehl–Neelsen stain (74.7%), cytology (59.2%), and tissue biopsy (57.8%) were the common diagnostic investigations. The majority (92.0%) had closed thoracostomy tube drainage, while 9.9% had chemical pleurodesis. The intra-hospital mortality was 10 (4.7%). Conclusion: TB, malignancy, and pneumonia are the leading causes of PE. A multidisciplinary approach is needed for optimal management.

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