Pronounced: PLUR-is-seeEn Español (Spanish Version)
Pleurisy is an inflammation of the pleura, the double-layered membrane that surrounds each lung and the rib cage. The pleura protects and lubricates the surface of the lungs as they inflate and deflate within the rib cage. When they become inflamed, the diseased surfaces rub painfully together.
Pleura of the Lungs
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There are several causes for either acute or chronic pleurisy.
- Viral infection such as influenza and cold viruses
- Lung infections from bacteria like tuberculosis or parasites like amebiasis
- Pulmonary embolism
- Systemic lupus
- After a heart attack such as Dressler’s syndrome
- Chest injury
- Heart failure
- Inflammatory bowel disease
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Chronic liver and kidney disease
- Sickle cell disease
- Drug reaction
Last reviewedJune 2013by Marcin Chwistek, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.