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Chyle fluid after thoracocentesis (Courtesy of B. Stanikova)
  • Accumulation of chylomicron-rich lymph
  • Generally through traumatic or inflammatory rupture of the thoracic lymphatic duct
    • The thoracic duct runs along the right dorsal aspect of the thoracic aorta enters the precardial mediastinum to terminate at the junction of the left jugular vein and anterior vena cava
    • Usually ruptures somewhere in the mediastinum
  • Causes:
    • Mediastinal tumours
    • Severe bouts of coughing
  • May be due to congenital defect in the thoracic duct