Pleural empyema is an infection of the pleural cavity. It generally occurs in the event of a superinfection of pleural effusion during pneumonia. Depending on the stage of infection, deposits and fibrous scar tissue may form between the pleural space and the lungs. This residual scarring (called a fibrous capsule) limits lung capacity.
Treatment may sometimes necessitate surgery performed by thoracoscopy. This operation is called decortication of the lung and consists of removing the fibrous capsule from the pleural cavity and the surface of the lung.
For more information on surgical treatment and hospitalization, please visit the website of the Lung Surgery Unit.