ICU Chest Films > Fluid in the Chest

Fluid in the Chest

Abnormal fluid collection in the chest of the ICU patient is an exceedingly common occurrence. Pleural effusion resulting from congestive heart failure is among the most common findings made using chest x-rays. Unfortunately, collections of fluid in the chest are more difficult to diagnose in the supine patient. Other forms of abnormal fluid in the chest include pericardial effusions and pulmonary edema. Differentating non-cardiac from cardiac forms of pulmonary edema is a challenge. The chest film is an important tool in making that distinction and an important tool in the managment of patients with pulmonary edema.

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