What is Pleurisy? Learn About the Causes, Risk Factors, and Symptoms

Mahesh
6 Min Read

We have protective layers on our organs which not only reduce friction but also provide protection to those organs as well. Our lungs are considered to be one of the most elastic organs of our body and tt also have a protective layering. But what if that layer gets punctured or injured because of some issue? 

Pleurisy is one such condition in which a person suffers from inflammation in the plural membranes. According to the best chest specialist in Multan, people who suffer from this condition are often dealing with an underperforming set of lungs. 

The membrane which has been inflamed or damaged leads to additional stress on the lungs, hence causing serious problems such as difficulty in breathing and the onset of lung cancers. 

What are the Causes of Pleurisy?

Given below are some of the common causes of pleurisy that you need to know about:

  • Pneumonia
  • Cold and influenza or other sorts of viral infections
  • Genetic disorders such as cystic fibrosis
  • Lung cancers
  • Tuberculosis

Some other diseases or conditions that might also end up increasing the risk of pleurisy are as follows:

  • Heart surgeries such as angioplasty or bypass surgery
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Cardiac complications such as pericarditis and abrupt heart rhythms

In rare cases, physical trauma or injury can sometimes lead to a broken ribcage. This can also lead to pleurisy. This is mainly because broken ribs can cause lacerations in the lungs, causing the air to escape. 

What are the Symptoms of Pleurisy? 

Given below are some of the common signs and symptoms of pleurisy that you need to know about: 

Excruciating pain and painful sensation in the chest especially when you are trying to breathe

Painful sensations that extend to the back and shoulders and arms

Stabbing pain in either one lung or both of them 

All of these above-mentioned symptoms are accompanied by the given below signs:

  • Chills or fevers
  • Serious and severe body pains and joint ache
  • Heavy breathing or difficulty in breathing

What are the Risk Factors of Pleurisy?

Age is considered to be one of the major risk factors for pleurisy. Pleurisy is more common in those who are above the age of 65. Because of the poor elasticity of the lungs, older people are more vulnerable to developing a chest infection. In addition to all this, people who belong to Mediterranean descent are also highly susceptible to pleurisy. 

What is the Diagnosis of Pleurisy? 

First things first, the doctors will take a physical examination to assess the ongoing condition to determine whether you have a common cold problem, a viral infection, or a full-fledged pulmonary problem such as pleurisy. 

Given below are some of the diagnostic measures that doctors often utilize for pleurisy:

Physical Examination

This method involves the use of a stethoscope to analyze the breathing pattern. The sounds that you are making while breathing will give a perfect analysis as to whether your lungs are functioning fine or not. 

Chest X-Ray

The next step in the diagnosis process is a chest x-ray. A chest x-ray is an imaging test that gives an insight as to whether the lungs are suffering from a laceration or not. It can also pinpoint whether there is an affected point and if yes, then where it is located. 

Blood Tests

Another diagnostic measure that can help to figure out the nature of the infection or the spread of the disease is conducting a blood test. Because if you are suffering from an infection then it will cause a spike in the level of white blood cells of the body which are there to increase the immunity of the body against the disease. 

CT-Scan

CT-Scan is an imaging test in which there are a series of X-rays of different regions of the body and they are then connected together to study the disease spread and whether it has any impact on the body or not. The main thing about getting a CT scan is that there are cross-sectional images in this one which is done by using computer processing. 

Doctors are able to look at the condition of the pleura with the help of a CT scan. 

Ultrasound

The use of waves to produce high quality images is one of the main task of getting an ultrasound. Doctors often recommend an ultrasound to find out if someone has pleurisy or not. 

EEG

In case of any previous record of cardiac problems. EEG is recommended to understand the right cause of the problem or discomfort. 

What are the Treatments of Pleurisy? 

Doctors can devise various different types of treatments for pleurisy which mostly depend on the spread of the disease and the age of the patient as well as the complications that might come with the disease. From medicines to breathing exercises and foods the treatment options for pleurisy and may depend on the above-mentioned factors

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