In anatomy, a potential space is a space between two adjacent structures that are normally pressed together (directly apposed). The pleural space, between the visceral and parietal pleura of the lung, is a potential space. Though it only contains a small amount of fluid normally, it can sometimes accumulate fluid or air that widens the space. The pericardial space is another potential space that may fill with fluid (effusion) in certain disease states (e.g. pericarditis; a large pericardial effusion may result in cardiac tamponade.
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- Guyton, Arthur (2006). Textbook of Medical Physiology. St. Louis: Elsevier Saunders. ISBN 978-0-7216-0240-0.