Hemothorax: Definition, Symptoms & Treatment

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: Hypercapnia: Definition, Symptoms & Treatment

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
 Replay
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:00 What Is a Hemothorax?
  • 0:48 Symptoms
  • 1:21 Treatment
  • 2:15 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Timeline
Autoplay
Autoplay
Speed Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Danielle Haak

Danielle has a PhD in Natural Resource Sciences and a MSc in Biological Sciences

A hemothorax is a condition where blood pools in between the wall of the chest and the lung. In this lesson, you'll learn what causes a hemothorax, what the symptoms are, and what methods are used to treat the condition.

What Is a Hemothorax?

A hemothorax is a medical condition where blood pools in between the wall of the chest and the lung. This area is called the pleural space. Now that we know what it is, let's check out some of the causes.

The most common cause of a hemothorax is chest injury or trauma. It is a form of internal bleeding that can take place after an accident. Other causes include tuberculosis, improper blood clotting, a lung infection, a tear in a blood vessel, or a complication due to heart surgery. Rib injuries can puncture the lung or chest cavity, causing bleeding. A hemothorax can also develop spontaneously or because of an error in medical care. Complications from other diseases or surgeries may lead to a hemothorax.

Symptoms

So, how do you know if you have a hemothorax? There are several symptoms you can look for. The most common symptoms of a hemothorax can be confused with those caused by other conditions. They include generalized anxiety, low blood pressure, chest pain, and rapid heart rate or breathing. Cool skin, restlessness, or difficulty breathing can also be symptoms of a hemothorax. It usually takes an x-ray or computerized axial tomography (CT) scan to diagnose this type of bleeding, as there are few, if any, indicators that can be externally detected.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support