This 43 year old man was discharged from hospital 1 week ago having been treated for pneumonia
Describe and interpret this CXR
CHEST X-RAY INTERPRETATION
There is left sided consolidation and loculated air within a complex pleural effusion which surrounds the hemithorax.
There is a left hydropneumothorax.
Right lung field is clear.
This is a complex empyema with pneumothorax.
Given the advanced pleural involvement this man should be considered for VATS early.
Despite IV antibiotics, chest drains and surgery, empyema still has a 15-20% mortality.
Despite being fit for surgery, some refuse: Dupuytren, Napoleon’s Surgeon declined surgery for his empyema, stating, “I would rather die at the hands of God than of surgeons”.