Bronchoscopic Myth and Legends: Optimum Amount of Pleural Fluid for Malignant Diagnostic Yield

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Abstract

Debate continues over the ideal amount of pleural fluid needed to maximize the malignant diagnostic yield. Conventional teaching emphasizes that more is better; therefore, usually the entire volume is submitted for cytologic evaluation. We conducted a literature review to evaluate the myth that analyzing the entire pleural fluid removed during thoracentesis for suspected malignancy increases the yield.

Myth: Analyzing the entire volume of pleural fluid removed during thoracentesis increases malignant diagnostic yield.

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