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Doctor insights on: Pain From A Thoracentesis Procedure

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Dr. Ivan Ip Dr. Ip
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
9 years in practice
Weill Cornell Medical College of Cornell University
1

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To what extent does a thoracentesis procedure cost?

To what extent does a thoracentesis procedure cost?

Varies: That's actually a very complicated question to answer due to lack of price transparency in healthcare. It differs based on your insurance status, level of thoracentesis (image guided, need for pigtail, etc.). CMS reimburses physicians about $50 - $100 for each of these, but you may get billed for much more ($200-$400) depending on insurance (+ facility fee)

Dr. David Dang
32 Doctors shared insights

Thoracentesis (Definition)

When a patient has fluid around the lungs, sometimes we need to find out what caused it, other times we want to remove the fluid so the patient can breath easier. It takes place under sterile conditions by placing a needle into the chest wall from the back and connecting the needle with a catheter to a suction bottle which collects the fluid. Fluid is ...Read more


Dr. Gerard Honore Dr. Honore
Fertility Medicine
25 years in practice
Wake Forest University School of Medicine
2

2
If you have thoracentesis done, what signs will show you that it was an effective procedure?

If you have thoracentesis done, what signs will show you that it was an effective procedure?

Chest x-ray: No fluid (or less fluid) on chest x-ray and no sign of pneumothorax (punctured lung.).

Dr. Shashank Jain Dr. Jain
Internal Medicine
years in practice
3

3
Why would a dr not do an thoracentesis when the patient could have had the INR increased via vitamin K and then the procedure could be performed.

Why would a dr not do an thoracentesis when the patient could have had the INR increased via vitamin K and then the procedure could be performed.

Depends: You probably mean decrease INR with vitamin k. So without knowing details at all, I would say that it probably depends upon how urgent it is. Maybe they want the INR to drift down on it's own and then try. You can certainly discuss this more

Dr. Nathaniel Evans III Dr. Evans III
Surgery - Thoracic
15 years in practice
Stanford University School of Medicine
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How does a doctor perform a thoracentesis? Is it the same thing as needle aspiration? My father might have lung cancer and was told that he would likely need a thoracentesis. I'd like to know some more about the procedure so I know what to expect when I g

How does a doctor perform a thoracentesis? Is it the same thing as needle aspiration? My father might have lung cancer and was told that he would likely need a thoracentesis. I'd like to know some more about the procedure so I know what to expect when I g

Thoracentesis: Thoracentesis is a procedure that allows removal of fluid from the pleural space (the space between the lungs and the rib cage). Normally there should be little or no fluid there. If fluid does accumulate a physician can insert a needle between the ribs (under local anesthesia) and drain some or all of the fluid. The fluid can then be tested to see what caused its accumulation.

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Dr. Corentine Kwende Dr. Kwende
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
12 years in practice
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
5

5
What is thoracentesis?

Procedure: Medical procedure used to remove excessive fluid from the lungs. It can be done to relieve pressure, improve oxygenation and decrease symptoms such as shortness of breath or chest pain or can be done to evaluate fluid to rule out cancer, TB etc.

Dr. Ed Friedlander Dr. Friedlander
Pathology
40 years in practice
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
6

6
What's a thoracentesis?

What's a thoracentesis?

Fluid drain fm chest: When there is fluid between the chest wall and the lung, it may be drained for diagnostic of therapeutic purposes using a needle and an evacuated jar.

Dr. Rita Agarwal Dr. Agarwal
Anesthesiology
31 years in practice
Baylor College of Medicine
7

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Can thoracentesis be perfomed on a person easily?

Can thoracentesis be perfomed on a person easily?

Yes: This is usually done with a little local anesthesia +/- a very little sedation.

Dr. Larry Maturani Dr. Maturani
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
20 years in practice
St. George's University School of Medicine
8

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What is the definition or description of: thoracentesis?

Remove pleural fluid: When a patient has fluid around the lungs, sometimes we need to find out what caused it, other times we want to remove the fluid so the patient can breath easier. It takes place under sterile conditions by placing a needle into the chest wall from the back and connecting the needle with a catheter to a suction bottle which collects the fluid. Fluid is then sent for testing.

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Dr. David Dang Dr. Dang
Radiology
10 years in practice
UC San Diego School of Medicine
9

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How come after my thoracentesis was done I woke up with pain?

Depends: There are a number of potential complications assoc w/ a thoracentesis. That being said, most of the time the procedure is safe. It is not unusual for patients to experience pain related to the needle placement through the plueral suface which is just outside the lung. Please check with your doctor that nothing more serious is going on, particularly if you have difficult breathing.

Dr. Ronald Krauser Dr. Krauser
Internal Medicine - Rheumatology
48 years in practice
Wake Forest University School of Medicine
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Can thoracentesis cause pneumonia?

Can thoracentesis cause pneumonia?

Unlikely: That is very unlikely. A collapsed lung (pneumothorax) is the most common complication.

Dr. Gutti Rao Dr. Rao
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
42 years in practice
Dr M.G.R. Medical University, Madras, Christian Medical College
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Does everyone with pleurisy have thoracentesis?

Does everyone with pleurisy have thoracentesis?

Not necessarily: Only when large collection of fluid accumulates.

Dr. HARRY OPSIMOS Dr. OPSIMOS
Pediatrics - Pulmonology
18 years in practice
St. George's University School of Medicine
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When's a thoracentesis and bronchoscopy performed?

When's a thoracentesis and bronchoscopy performed?

See below: Thoracentesis is when fluid is removed from the space between your lung and the chest wall with a needle - usually done to relieve pressure, or send a culture. Bronchoscopy is done to look inside your airways with a camera (bronchoscope). It is done for numerous reasons: clean up secretions, look at anatomy, investigate tumors, obtain biopsies, and others.

Dr. Sunil Mehra Dr. Mehra
Internal Medicine - Pulmonology
40 years in practice
13

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Does everyone with pleurisy have to have thoracentesis?

Not really: If pleurisy is associated with pleural effusion and symptoms warrant then it should be tapped.

Dr. Nestor Del rosario Dr. Del rosario
Addiction Medicine
30 years in practice
Eastern Virginia Medical School
14

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When is a thoracentesis and bronchoscopy usually performed?

Procedures: Thoracentesis is done to draw out fluid if there is accumulation of fluid between the lining of the lung and the chest wall. Bronchoscopy is done to look inside the airways in the lungs as in looking for tumor, bleeding, diagnose infections and sometimes in treatment as in bronchoplasty and stent placement.

Dr. Rita Agarwal Dr. Agarwal
Anesthesiology
31 years in practice
Baylor College of Medicine
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Why do they test the fluid from a thoracentesis for amylase?

Pancreas: To try and determine where is has or is coming from. Amylase may be a sign that that there is a problem with the pancreas nad although rare may be foind in thoracentesis fluid.

Dr. Corentine Kwende Dr. Kwende
Internal Medicine - Hospital-based practice
12 years in practice
University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
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When can I remove the bandages after a thoracentesis (chest tap)?

When can I remove the bandages after a thoracentesis (chest tap)?

Doctor: Usually your doctor makes the decision. Follow up with them.

Dr. Douglas Arenberg Dr. Arenberg
Internal Medicine - Pulmonary Critical Care
27 years in practice
University of Illinois College of Medicine
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Does everyone with pleurisy have to have thoracentesis to find a cause?

Does everyone with pleurisy have to have thoracentesis to find a cause?

Pleurisy, no: But pleural effusions usually should be investigated by a thoracentesis unless the cause is obviously heart failure. Even then, an initial thoracentesis should be done to confirm the cause. If you argue that not all effusions require a thoracentesis, then I need to know if you'll defend me if/when I get sued for missing an empyema or mesothelioma.

Dr. Allan Goldstein Dr. Goldstein
Internal Medicine
52 years in practice
The Ohio State University College of Medicine
18

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Doc....What is the risk of repeated thoracentesis?

Several: Infection, bleeding. Collapsed lung---treat cause of recurrent fluid in the chest.

Dr. Steven Brown Dr. Brown
Surgery - Hand Surgery
35 years in practice
University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine
19

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In which intercostal space is thoracentesis performed?

Posterolateral: Today most thoracentesis is ultrasound guided to avoid injury to lungs, liver or other structures. It is typically done along the posterior axillary line, intercostal space is primarily determined by location of pleural fluid.

Dr. Joseph Roosth Dr. Roosth
Internal Medicine
31 years in practice
University of Texas Medical Branch School of Medicine
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Do I have to get some blood tests before doing a thoracentesis?

Do I have to get some blood tests before doing a thoracentesis?

Yes: A doctor will usually want a few simple blood tests to make sure you do not have some potential for bleeding prior to a thoracentesis. It depends a lot on what medications you are currently taking, especailly blood thinning medications and your general level of health at the time of the thoracentesis. A protime test and a blood count are typical tests to do prior.