Thursday, July 7, 2016

Q: After Cardiac surgery which side of pleural effusion is of more concern. Right or Left?

Answer:  Right

Pleural effusions after cardiac surgery is almost a norm and rarely requires major intervention beside possible thoracentesis for symptomatic relief. Symptomatic Right sided pleural effusion without any obvious explanation like CHF should be looked into with more concern.


1. Sadikot RT, Rogers JT, Cheng DS, et al. Pleural fluid characteristics of patients with symptomatic pleural effusion after coronary artery bypass graft surgery. Arch Intern Med 2000; 160:2665. 

2. Labidi M, Baillot R, Dionne B, et al. Pleural effusions following cardiac surgery: prevalence, risk factors, and clinical features. Chest 2009; 136:1604.

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