Tuberculous pleural effusions: ultrasonic diagnosis

J Clin Ultrasound. 1992 Sep;20(7):461-5. doi: 10.1002/jcu.1870200708.


Twenty patients with tuberculous pleural effusions were studied with ultrasonography. In 18 patients, ultrasonography demonstrated regular pleural thickening which was less than 1 cm except in 1 case. In 4 cases there were a few pleural nodules, whereas in 2 cases the pleural surface showed small nodularity. The latter finding may be diagnostic for a tuberculous etiology. Eighteen patients had multiple, delicate, mobile septations in the effusions, and a lattice-like appearance had formed in 6 cases. Computed tomography was obtained in 7 cases, and pleural thickening was demonstrated in 6 of them. Ultrasonography is a useful imaging modality in the diagnosis of tuberculous pleurisy.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pleura / diagnostic imaging
  • Pleura / pathology
  • Pleural Effusion / diagnostic imaging*
  • Pleural Effusion / pathology
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Tuberculosis, Pleural / diagnostic imaging*
  • Tuberculosis, Pleural / pathology
  • Ultrasonography