Q. Will pleural thickening worsen with age?

Answered by
Dr. Rohit Jain
and medically reviewed by Dr. Sneha Kannan
Published on Feb 29, 2016 and last reviewed on: May 23, 2019

Hi doctor,

One year ago, I had massive left-sided pleural effusion with respiratory distress. Pigtail insertion was done and it was indicative of TB. Now, my ATT is stopped. After two months of treatment, my ultrasound report said that pleural thickening is seen along left posterolateral chest wall. Now, I do not have any symptom like chest pain, breathlessness and cough. As I am fit and healthy, I have stopped the treatment. Will pleural thickening get worsen with age? Will the person in question face a higher risk of having lung disease in future? Now my age is 21. Is pleural thickening reversible in my case? I would like to go abroad for job. Will pleural thickening create any problem in my working visa? If yes, what can I do? Please help.

Dr. Rohit Jain

Cardiology Critical Care Physician Diabetology Endocrinology General Medicine Internal Medicine Pulmonology (Asthma Doctors) Sexology
#

Hi,

Welcome to icliniq.com.

Please relax. You have probably healed your TB (tuberculosis) and there is nothing to worry right now.

Pleural thickening has happened as a result of the effusion you had. It is a way of healing which the body does when effusion happens. It will not get worse with age and you will not get TB again. There are no higher chances of cancer also related to that. A large number of people suffer from this and it does not affect life in any way.

Thickening usually does not get reversed. It will remain there. The only problem which you might face in visa interview is, if they require your chest x-ray to be done and then thickening will be seen. Now, it is evident that they will get your other tests done to rule out active TB, which should come negative.

There are certain countries which bar people who have had TB. But, I do not think such policies are present in working visa. I would recommend you to read the specific country website and also consult some agent about this before you fill the medical declaration. Except for the visa, it will not cause any issue in your life.

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