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Fluid or air that accumulates in the pleural space will reduce
lung expansion and lead to respiratory compromise and hypoxia.
Insertion of an intercostal catheter (ICC) enables drainage of
air or fluid from the pleural space, allowing negative
intra-thoracic pressures to be re-established leading to lung
Local anaesthetic and intravenous analgesia are mandatory, as
ICC placement is a painful procedure. The use of sedation should
always be discussed with a senior emergency doctor, as it can
potentially worsen the patient's clinical condition.
Establish patient on continuous cardiac monitoring and pulse
Reassess ABCs and ensure ICC is functioning
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