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An build up of pus in a body cavity or an internal organ. Empyema can arise around a lung as an unusual complication of infection such as pleurisy or pneumonia. The key symptoms are breathlessness, fever and chest pain. Treatment is mainly by aspiration (removal of pus by suction) and the injection of anti0biotic drugs. An operation to open the chest cavity and drain the pus can sometimes be undergone.

Empyema of the gallbladder is a complication of cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder), creating abdominal pain, jaundice and fever. This type of empyema is cured by surgical removal of the gallbladder.

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