Chest x ray
Chest x-ray is a regular diagnostic test that throws light on the condition of the lungs, heart and chest wall. Chest x-ray reveals possible lung cancer, emphysema, heart failure and pneumonia. Heart irregularities and CHF may be visible on a chest X ray. Any pleural effusions may be detected through a chest x-ray. The patient must wear loose fitting gown and remove any metal objects from clothing. In most cases, chest x-ray of frontal or posteroanterior view is taken. The patient has to take a deep breath so as to ensure a good quality chest x-ray image. There is no discomfort. Pregnant women must not undergo chest x-ray. But some conditions may not be easily diagnosed with a chest Xray, such as pulmonary embolism or some cancers. In such cases, CT scan of chest is used for further clarification. Abnormal findings on chest X-rays can range from pneumonia and tuberculosis to lung tumor or collapsed lung. Osteoporosis or fracture of ribs or spine can be detected.
Costochondritis involves inflammation of the cartilage connecting a rib to the breastbone. It manifests as sharp chest pain in the front chest wall. This condition is usually harmless and usually does not need any treatment. Often Costochondritis pain feels much like a heart attack. It is a common cause for chest pain. Costochondritis may also result from injury or as a complication of sternum surgery. Costochondritis can result from viral, bacterial or fungal infections. Tietze's syndrome is a condition where the costochondritis pain is also accompanied by swelling. Fibromyalgia can be another cause of costochondritis.
The pain occurs when coughing, sneezing or taking deep breaths. Patients suffering from costochondritis may have difficulty while breathing. Chest pain may be aggravated due to stress. Costochondritis cannot be diagnosed with imaging tools. NSAIDs are prescribed to relieve pain and inflammation. Muscle relaxants can give relief to those suffering from Costochondritis.
Thoracentesis or pleural fluid aspiration is a procedure that involves removal of fluid from the space between the lining of the pleura and the chest wall. Fluid is withdrawn with the aid of a needle passed through the skin of the chest wall into the pleural space. An analysis of the pleural effusion can indicate pulmonary embolism, hemothorax, Pancreatitis, pneumonia, heart failure or thyroid disease. Thoracentesis can aid in relieving pressure caused by accumulation of excess pleural fluid. A chest x-ray is taken before and after the Thoracentesis process. Do not move or cough while the diagnostic test is being conducted. Patients who have had lung surgery or lung disease such as emphysema may have difficulty with Thoracentesis. Pneumothorax, pulmonary edema or respiratory distress are rare complications associated with thoracentesis. It is essential to keep the doctor posted of any medications such as blood thinners or known allergies.
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Bibliography / Reference
Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: October 22, 2019