What is the role of medications in the development of pleural effusion (fluid on the lungs)?

Updated: Dec 28, 2018
  • Author: Kamran Boka, MD, MS; Chief Editor: Guy W Soo Hoo, MD, MPH  more...
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Answer

Medications cause only a small proportion of all pleural effusions and are associated with exudative pleural effusions. However, early recognition of this iatrogenic cause of pleural effusion avoids unnecessary additional diagnostic procedures and leads to definitive therapy, which is discontinuation of the medication. Implicated drugs include medications that cause drug-induced lupus syndrome (eg, procainamide, hydralazine, quinidine), nitrofurantoin, dantrolene, methysergide, procarbazine, and methotrexate.


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