Fluid in Lung & Diuretic

I had a dual lead pacemaker installed on Feb 28, 2020 due to bradycardia which was causing me shortness of breath.

After the surgery they took a chest xray and told me that I had a small to moderate right pleural effusion (fluid in my right lung).  They put me on a 20mg dosage of Furosemide (a loop diuretic) to try to drain the fluid out of my right lung.  It has been 10 days and the fluid is still there along with my shortness of breath.

My question, is how long does it typically take for Furmoside to work?  I always thought diuretics were supposed to act pretty quickly.

Also, my medical reports are now referring to my condition as "pleural effusion with acute diastolic congestive heart failure".  I thought I just had bradycardia and that the pacemaker would solve my shortness of breath problems.  Apparently I was wrong!




Pleural effusion

by Gemita - 2020-03-09 19:03:05

Hello, my husband had a pleural effusion after pacemaker implant due to trauma during surgery. It wouldnt resolve and as there was some doubt as to the exact cause of his pleural effusion we were told that the fluid should be drained from his left lung and tested for a definitive diagnosis.

A diagnosis of Post-Cardiac Injury Syndrome was eventually made although signs of inflammation and infection were also present.  As soon as the fluid was drained, my husband's symptoms of breathlessness and pleuritic pain eased considerably over a few weeks.

if you are not getting better on diuretics I would go back to your doctor for further advice.  Although draining fluid from the lung is an invasive procedure, in experienced hands it should be safe amd give your doctors a lot of additional information about the "type" of pleural effusion you have (although I note that they have stated you have acute diastolic congestive heart failure).  Nonetheless draining fluid may quickly help relieve your symptoms and help rule out any other condition present.

I do hope your breathlessness eases quickly and that your pacemaker can be programmed to help with your acute symptoms.


pleural effusion

by Dave H - 2020-03-09 23:10:30

I had a pleural effusion back in 2007. Personally, I don't see how furosemide would be of any use, esp. the small 20mg dose.  In my case, a type of needle was inserted into the base of the affected pleura and approx. 3 liters of fluid was drained out.  Relief was immediate! Cause was determined to be my breathing in of the airborne  fungus spores common in the SW U.S. desert that the locals call "Valley Fever."  I got the hell outta Arizona and have been OK since.

pleural effusion

by Badger Bart - 2020-03-10 00:19:40

I think my Dr. is concerned that the pleural effusion is caused by my underlying condition, i.e., acute diastolic congestive heart failure.  If he drains the fluid from my affected pleura without treating the underlying condition, it will just fill up again.  So, he is first trying the diuretics and then perhaps adding an ACE inhibitor  to the mix down the road.

I'm trying to be patient, but  not seeing any improvement in my condition after 10+ days of the diuretic regime is frustrating.


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