What types of medication are used in the treatment of pneumothorax?

Updated: Apr 28, 2020
  • Author: Brian J Daley, MD, MBA, FACS, FCCP, CNSC; Chief Editor: Mary C Mancini, MD, PhD, MMM  more...
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A tension pneumothorax requires treatment with rapidity. However, anesthetics and analgesics should be used if the patient is not in distress. The goals of pharmacotherapy are to reduce morbidity and to prevent complications. In addition to the medications discussed in this section, talc may be used as a sclerosing agent for pleurodesis by mixing 2-5 g in 250 mL of sterile isotonic sodium chloride solution to form a slurry or poudrage. Note that acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) has been reported after use of talc as a pleural sclerosing agent, but this is considered a rare complication.

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