Treatment of malignant pleural effusion: a method using tube thoracostomy and talc

Ann Thorac Surg. 1976 Jul;22(1):8-15. doi: 10.1016/s0003-4975(10)63944-6.


Our experience with a simple bedside method for controlling recurrent symptomatic malignant pleural effusion is presented. The method consists of intercostal tube thoracostomy, instillation of a suspension of talc, and waterseal suction drainage. Based on our experience, we believe certain criteria should be met before undertaking talc pleurodesis. In properly selected patients the results with tube thoracostomy and talc pleurodesis have been uniformly good in preventing fluid recurrence and return of disabling symptoms. The technique and results are discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Breast Neoplasms / complications
  • Carcinoma, Bronchogenic / complications
  • Drainage / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Lung Neoplasms / complications
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / complications*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / complications
  • Pleural Effusion / diagnostic imaging
  • Pleural Effusion / etiology
  • Pleural Effusion / surgery*
  • Postoperative Care
  • Preoperative Care
  • Radiography
  • Recurrence
  • Talc / administration & dosage*
  • Talc / therapeutic use


  • Talc