Pleurisy is a condition where the covering of the lungs is inflamed. Initially, there is a sharp chest pain that could radiate to the other areas of the chest. These could lead to shortness of breath and a dry cough. Pleurisy is usually due to a viral infection such as the flu or a bacterial infection of the upper respiratory tract. In severe cases, pleurisy may also be due to lung cancer or a pulmonary embolism.
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