Also called pleuritis, pleurisy typically causes sharp pain, almost always when you take a breath.
Pleurisy occurs when the double membrane (pleura) that lines your chest cavity and surrounds each of your lungs becomes inflamed.
A double layer of membranes called pleura separate your lungs from your chest wall. One layer of the pleura overlies each lung. The other layer lines the inner chest wall. The layers are like two pieces of smooth satin rubbing against each other with almost no friction, allowing your lungs to expand and contract when you breathe without any resistance from the lining of the chest wall.
Pleurisy occurs as a complication of a wide variety of underlying conditions. Relieving pleurisy involves treating the underlying condition, if it’s known, and taking pain relievers.