SynopsisCodesDifferential Diagnosis & PitfallsBest TestsDrug Reaction DataReferences
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Contributors: Michael W. Winter MD, Benjamin L. Mazer MD, MBA
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed


Inflammation of the pleura characterized by a sharp chest pain that worsens during inspiration, coughing, or sneezing. Etiology includes viral infection, pulmonary embolism, tuberculosis, pericarditis, exudative pleural effusions, pneumothorax, and trauma including rib fractures. Common findings include fever, cough, dyspnea, pleural rub, and cyanosis. Findings and treatment will vary based on etiology.

Occasionally, surgery to drain fluid from the lungs in required.


R09.1 – Pleurisy

196075003 – Pleurisy

Differential Diagnosis & Pitfalls

  • Pulmonary embolism
  • Pleural effusion
  • Pneumonia (eg, Viral pneumonia, Streptococcus pneumoniae pneumonia)
  • Pulmonary empyema
  • Common cold
  • Autoimmune pleuritis / serositis
  • Pericarditis
  • Myocarditis
  • Pericardial effusion
  • Acute coronary syndrome
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Pneumothorax
  • Musculoskeletal injury
  • Costochondritis
  • Toxic inhalation
  • Pneumoconiosis (Asbestosis, Silicosis, etc)
  • Malignancy (particularly Lung cancer, Malignant mesothelioma, metastasis to lung or pleura)
  • Tuberculosis
  • Sickle cell disease
  • Pulmonary edema
  • Granulomatosis with polyangiitis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Antiglomerular basement membrane disease

Best Tests

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Drug Reaction Data

Below is a list of drugs with literature evidence indicating an adverse association with this diagnosis. The list is continually updated through ongoing research and new medication approvals. Click on Citations to sort by number of citations or click on Medication to sort the medications alphabetically.

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Last Updated:09/16/2020
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A medical illustration showing key findings of Pleurisy : Cough, Fever, Pleuritic chest pain, Dyspnea, RR increased, Pleural rub
Copyright © 2024 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.