A 57-year-old man was accidentally hit by concrete blocks weighing 3 tons on his right side, and was admitted to a hospital. The radiologic findings taken immediately after trauma demonstrated pneumo-mediastinum, subcutaneous emphysema with multiple rib fractures and right clavicle fracture. At computed tomography (CT) scan 16 hours after trauma, pneumomediastinum and subcutaneous emphysema turned out to be worsened with an increased bilateral pleural effusion. An emergency thoracotomy revealed no abnormalities of trachea or esophagus, and neither bronchoscopy or esophagogastroscopy, showed injuries anywhere inside. The chest cavities and mediastinum were washed well with 3 liters of saline solution. The patient had a good course after surgery without any complications, and was discharged at the 18th hospital day. Mediastinal drainage by an emergency operation should always be a choice to a patient having a progressively worsening pneumomediastinum which might cause tachycardia, low blood pressure, and severe dyspnea due to compression of blood vessels and trachea.
|Number of pages||4|
|Journal||Kyobu geka. The Japanese journal of thoracic surgery|
|Publication status||Published - Sep 2007|
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