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How is empyema diagnosed?

Diana Meeks
Diana Meeks on behalf of Sigma Nursing
Family Practitioner

The first step in the diagnosis of empyema is usually to take a chest x-ray. Further possible tests include a CT scan or a thoracentesis. A thoracentesis is a procedure in which some fluid in the pleural cavity (a space just outside the lungs) is removed. A Gram stain and culture of the fluid may also be used to verify and identify the bacteria involved in the infection.

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