Pleurisy | Health Dictionary

An inflammation of the serous membranes that both surround the lungs and line the inside of the chest cavity; the two membranes supply fluid lubrication between the expanding and contracting lungs and the body. Most pleurisy (and usually the milder form) follows or accompanies bronchitis or late winter chest colds...sort of pulmonary cabin fever. It may be dry pleurisy (with few secretions and sharp sticking pain that prevents any but moderate inhalation), or acute or effusive pleurisy (with fever, coughing, and built up serous fluids...usually tossed off as bronchitis). Some types are part of serious cardio-pulmonary disorders and/or chronic disease.
In?ammation of the PLEURA or serous membrane investing the lung and lining the inner surface of the ribs. It is a common condition, and may be either acute or chronic, the latter being usually tuberculous in origin (see TUBERCULOSIS).

Many cases of pleurisy are associated with only a little e?usion, the in?ammation consisting chie?y in exudation of FIBRIN: to this form the term ‘dry pleurisy’ is applied. Further, pleurisy may be limited to a very small area – or, on the contrary, may a?ect, throughout a greater or less extent, the pleural surfaces of both lungs.

Causes Pleurisy is often associated with other forms of in?ammatory disease within the chest, more particularly PNEUMONIA, BRONCHIECTASIS, and tuberculosis; it occasionally accompanies PERICARDITIS. It may also be due to carcinoma of the lung, or be secondary to abdominal infections such as subphrenic abscess. Further, wounds or injuries of the thoracic walls are apt to set up pleurisy.

Symptoms The symptoms of pleurisy vary, being generally well marked, but sometimes obscure. DRY PLEURISY In the case of dry pleurisy, which is, on the whole, the milder form, the chief symptom is a sharp pain in the side, felt especially on breathing. Fever may or may not be present. There is a slight, dry cough, and breathing is quicker than normal and shallow. PLEURISY WITH EFFUSION is usually more severe than dry pleurisy, and, although it may in some cases develop insidiously, it is in general ushered in sharply by shivering and fever, like other acute in?ammatory diseases. Pain is felt in the side or breast, of a severe cutting or stabbing character. A dry cough usually occurs and breathing is painful and di?cult.

Treatment The treatment varies greatly with the form and severity of the attack. Bed rest, antibiotics, analgesics and antipyretics are advisable. A large pleural e?usion may need to be drained via an aspiration needle.

Pleurisy | Health Dictionary

Keywords of this word: Pleurisy


Herbal Manual

Asclepias tuberosa. N.O. Asclepiadaceae.

Synonym: Butterfly Weed, Tuber Root, Wind Root. Habitat: Moist, loamy soil. Indigenous to U.S.A

Features ? Stem two to three feet high, contains milky juice. Root, wrinkled longitudinally, light brown outer surface, whitish internally ; fracture tough, irregular. Rootstock knotty, faintly ringed. Acrid taste.

Part used ? Root.

Action: Diaphoretic, expectorant, antispasmodic.

Chest complaints; acts directly on the lungs, and stimulates sweat glands. Relaxes capillaries, relieving strain on heart and lungs. Reduces pain and assists breathing in pleurisy. Infusion of 1 ounce of the powdered root with 1 pint of boiling water is taken in wineglass doses, to which a teaspoonful of composition powder (Myrica compound) may be added with advantage.... Herbal Manual


Beneficial Teas

Pleurisy root tea is an aromatic herbal tea which you are bound to enjoy. The indigenous Indians used to drink it a lot, especially thanks to its health benefits. About Pleurisy Root Tea Pleurisy root tea is made from the roots of the pleurisy plant, also known as the butterfly weed. The plant grows in North America. It can grow up to 1m tall, with multiple stems and spirally-arranged, spear-pointed leaves that are 5-12cm long. Clusters of orange or yellow flowers bloom during summertime, attracting butterflies, insects and birds. The plant can be found growing on dry, open fields, under direct sunlight. How to prepare Pleurisy Root Tea If you want to enjoy a cup of pleurisy root tea, add a teaspoon of dried, chopped roots to a cup of freshly boiled water. Let it steep for 10-15 minutes before straining it to remove the herbs. Sweeten it with honey or fruit juice, if necessary. Pleurisy Root Tea Benefits Pleurisy root contains various active constituents, such as glycosides, resins, amino acids, volatile oil, glucosidal principal, lupeol, and alkaloids. They are transferred to the pleurisy root tea, as well. Because if this, the tea has lots of important health benefits. Pleurisy root tea is often included in treatments for various respiratory ailments and pulmonary infections, for example pleurisy, asthma, bronchitis or pneumonia. It helps alleviate pain and congestion by reducing the mucus thickness in the lungs and enabling the patient to expel the blockage. Drinking pleurisy root tea helps both with fevers and detoxification, as it stimulates sweating and perspiration. It is also useful as an herbal treatment for colds and influenza. You can also drink pleurisy root tea if you’ve got problems with diarrhea, dysentery, chronic rheumatism, colic, muscle tension and spasm. Pleurisy root tea can also be used topically. You can soak a clean cloth with the tea and use it to treat swellings, bruises, lameness, wounds and skin ulcers. Pleurisy Root Tea Side Effects If you’re pregnant, you shouldn’t drink pleurisy root tea. It may cause uterine contractions, which could lead to miscarriages. Also, it is safer not to drink this tea if you’re breast feeding. Children shouldn’t drink pleurisy root tea either, because of the small amount of cardiac glycosides. You should be careful with the amount of pleurisy root tea you drink if you’ve got cardiovascular problems or you’re taking cardiac glycosides. Also, if you’re taking any other medication, check with your doctor if it’s safe to drink pleurisy root tea. Don’t drink more than 3-4 cups of pleurisy root tea a day. If you drink too much, it might lead to symptoms such as intestinal cramping, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Pleurisy root tea is ideal for an everyday beverage. It has many health benefits and only a few side effects. Once you try it, you’ll surely enjoy it!... Beneficial Teas