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Empyema thoracis: Surgical management in children

Author(s): Menon Prema | Kanojia Ravi | Rao K.L.N

Journal: Journal of Indian Association of Pediatric Surgeons
ISSN 0971-9261

Volume: 14;
Issue: 3;
Start page: 85;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: Chest tube drainage | empyema thoracis | fibrinolytic agents | open decortications | thoracocentesis | video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery

Empyema thoracis can produce significant morbidity in children if inadequately treated. Correct evaluation of the stage of the disease, the clinical condition of the child and proper assessment of the response to conservative treatment is crucial in deciding the mode of further surgical intervention. This ranges from intercostal chest tube drainage and video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery to open decortication. Surgical decortication becomes mandatory in neglected cases; it gives very gratifying results ameliorating the disease rapidly and is well tolerated by young patients. This article reviews the current literature and discusses the important considerations while managing these patients. Indications for surgery are highlighted, based on our large experience at a tertiary care center.
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