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PleurX Catheter Placement

Tunneled Pleural and Peritoneal Catheter Placement

Tunneled pleural and peritoneal catheter insertion is performed as a treatment option for recurrent pleural effusion (pleural fluid) or ascites (fluid in the abdomen). Your pleura is a large, thin sheet of tissue that wraps around the outside of your lungs and lines the inside of your chest cavity. Patients with lung cancer, chylothorax, metastatic, cancers, liver disease, and advanced congestive heart failure are typically candidates for this procedure.

Most patients have reoccurring accumulation of pleural fluid, resulting in breathing issues, chest pain, cough, and the inability to lie flat. Additionally, patients with ascites due to cancer are able to have a tunneled peritoneal catheter placed to relieve their abdomenal fullness, pain, and breathing issues.

Why is it used?

  • Catheters offer a minimally invasive approach that allows daily or every other day drainage of recurrent fluid at home, without needing weekly appointments for thoracentesis or paracentesis

What Makes Tunneled Pleural/Peritoneal Catheters Different?

  • They are used in combination with a disposable bottle collection system
  • These bottles are connected to the catheters and contain a vacuum that gently removes the fluid
  • A drainage schedule is created and either the patient, family members, or home nurse can assist with drainage
  • Once completed, a discrete sterile dressing is applied over the catheter

Benefits of Tunneled Pleural/Peritoneal Catheters

  • It is a minimally invasive alternative to draining recurrent pleural fluid and ascites, which allows patients to drain fluid at home, avoiding numerous appointments for thoracentesis or paracentesis.


Appointments & Referrals

NOTE: All referred patients will still have the option of continuing treatment with their primary care physicians after the procedure.

Interventional Pulmonology Locations


La Jolla

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