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Pleural cavity

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Thorax section 3

The pleural cavity is the dark area between the lung and the pleura, courtesy Anatomist90, via Wikipedia

The pleural cavity is, in a normal person, a narrow space between the lungs and the pleura, a membrane that covers the back of the ribs. It is mostly empty, but contains a small amount of fluid. When a person inhales, the lung expands into the pleural cavity. The fluid both lubricates the pleura and allows the expanding lung to cling tightly to the pleura without a physical attachment, maximixing the expansion space.

A pleural effusion occurs when fluid accumulates in the pleural cavity. This can be from excess production of pleural fluid, but can also be blood leaking into the cavity.

A pneumothorax occurs when there there is excess air or another gas in the pleural cavity, preventing the lungs from expanding due to air pressure alone.

Pleural cavity at Wikipedia

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