Clinicopathologic significance of eosinophilic pleural effusions in a population with a high prevalence of tuberculosis and cancer

Acta Cytol. Sep-Oct 2007;51(5):773-81. doi: 10.1159/000325841.


Objective: To reveal the diagnostic and prognostic significance of eosinophilic pleural effusions (EPEs) and assess their clinical implications.

Study design: Seventy EPEs from 60 patients among 697 consecutive pleural effusions were investigated from 1996-2005 at Kocaeli University Hospital, Kocaeli, Turkey. Koss and Light's criteria were applied in the analysis, which comprised macroscopic, cytopathologic, biochemical and microbiologic examinations.

Results: Overall, cancerous underlying conditions were diagnosed in 22 patients (13 malignant and 9 paramalignant), 36.7% of EPEs. Benign causes were found in 43.3% (26 of 60) of the patients. Twelve pleural effusions (20.0%) were idiopathic. The comparison of pleural fluid and peripheral blood findings disclosed no significant difference among the various subgroups.

Conclusion: EPE could be associated with inflammatory, benign, cancerous and paramalignant conditions. A closer search for a definite causes is warranted in the setting of EPEs, especially in populations with a high prevalence of tuberculosis and malignancy, such as in Kocaeli, Turkey, an industrial city in a developing country.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Blood Cell Count
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Demography
  • Eosinophilia / blood
  • Eosinophilia / complications
  • Eosinophilia / diagnosis
  • Eosinophilia / pathology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / complications*
  • Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Pleural Effusion / blood
  • Pleural Effusion / complications*
  • Pleural Effusion / diagnosis
  • Pleural Effusion / pathology*
  • Prevalence
  • Tuberculosis / complications*
  • Tuberculosis / diagnosis
  • Tuberculosis / epidemiology*
  • Turkey / epidemiology