Spontaneous haemopneumothorax (SHP) can be life threatening and is an important cause for unexplained signs of significant hypovolaemia. There is still some debate relating to patient selection and timing of surgery, particularly in those who become stable following chest tube insertion without further blood loss. Review of the literature over the past decade in the management of SHP are presented and discussed. Surgery should be considered early in the management of SHP to reduce morbidity associated with continued haemorrhage and inadequate drainage. Lower postoperative complications and shorter hospital stay following video assisted thoracic surgery compared with thoracotomy have led to its increased acceptance as an alternative approach for SHP patients who are haemodynamically stable.
- Spontaneous haemopneumothorax
- spontaneous pneumothorax
- video-assisted thoracoscopy
- thoracic medicine
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Competing interest None.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.