Benign Pleural Effusion

This is an accumulation of fluid in the outer layer of the lung. It is usually found in a patient who has been exposed to asbestos and can indicate the development of malignant mesothelioma.

Less common is an accumulation of fluid which is clear (but may be blood-stained) and occurs as a result of benign inflammatory changes. This condition tends to occur earlier than mesothelioma, usually between ten and twenty years from first exposure.

It may cause breathlessness and feelings of chest restriction. The condition will be visible on an x-ray.