Pleural fluid (PEF)

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  • View:
    Lateral and VD

  • Defining characteristics:
    Prominent pleural fissure lines, retraction of lung margins from the diaphragm or chest wall, focal accumulation of tissue-dense opacity can identify fluid within the pleural space

  • Common differential diagnoses:
    Heart failure (in cats), pyothorax, chylothorax, hypoproteinemia, hemorrhage

  • Helpful additional data:
    Has the patient had labored breathing? Has there been any trauma? Has there been exposure to rodenticide?

  • Commonly associated diagnostics:
    Consider *SignalCare MDB, possible thoracic ultrasound if available

  • Commonly associated treatments:
    Stabilization as needed, supportive care (oxygen), symptomatic treatment, discuss corrective options (set up for thoracocentesis)

  • Commonly associated home care:
    Depending on the cause, monitor for increased respiratory effort and labored breathing


*SignalCare MDB = CBC/Chem/UA/Thx/Abd