Jornal de Pediatria
Print version ISSN 0021-7557
On-line version ISSN 1678-4782
FRAGA, José Carlos and KIM, Peter. Surgical treatment of parapneumonic pleural effusion and its complications. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2002, vol.78, suppl.2, pp.161-170. ISSN 0021-7557. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0021-75572002000800007.
Objective: surgical treatment of parapneumonic pleural effusion in children is controversial. The type of intervention is based mainly on personal experience and on the small number of reported cases. This article aims at presenting a literature review and the authors' experience in the surgical management of parapneumonic pleural effusion in children. Sources: data were searched in the Medline and Lilacs databases. Summary of the findings: complicated parapneumonic effusion should be surgically drained if thoracentesis reveals the presence of pus, positive Gram stain or culture, or pH less than 7.0 or glucose less than 40 mg/dl. The surgical drainage depends on the stage of parapneumonic pleural effusion: at the acute stage closed thoracostomy drainage is enough; at the fibrinopurulent stage thoracoscopy is indicated; at organizational stage thoracotomy can be performed in children with stable anesthetic conditions, and open thoracostomy drainage should be used in patients in a poor state of health. Echography is very important to evaluate the staging of parapneumonic effusion. Conclusions: surgical treatment of complicated parapneumonic effusion should be done as early as possible, and the kind of procedure depends on the stage of pleural effusion. In children with complicated parapneumonic effusion echography is very important to evaluate the staging of parapneumonic effusion.
Keywords : pleural effusion; surgical drainage; surgery.