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Tuberculous pleural effusion

  • Symptoms


    Signs and tests

    Fluid can be removed with a needle from the pleural space, called thoracentesis. However, in most cases, the tuberculosis bacteria cannot be found in the fluid by examining it under a microscope or by trying to grow the bacteria in the laboratory from a sample of pleural fluid (culture).

    The best way to make the diagnosis is to remove a piece of the lining of the lung (pleural tissue) by biopsy. This is more likely to reveal the disease-causing organism through a culture or by examining it under a microscope.

    Special dyes are added to a sample to see the bacteria under the microscope. The organism takes up the dye, and then appears colored when viewed under a microscope.