Pediatric Emergency Care

Skip Navigation LinksHome > May 2011 - Volume 27 - Issue 5 > Tension Chylothorax Complicating Acute Malignant Airway Obst...
Pediatric Emergency Care:
doi: 10.1097/PEC.0b013e318216b2f8
Illustrative Cases

Tension Chylothorax Complicating Acute Malignant Airway Obstruction

Piastra, Marco MD*; Pietrini, Domenico MD*; Ruggiero, Antonio MD†; Rizzo, Daniela MD†; Marzano, Laura MD*; Attinà, Giorgio MD†; De Luca, Daniele MD*; De Rosa, Gabriella MD‡; Conti, Giorgio MD*

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Acute upper airway obstruction represents one of the most challenging emergencies in pediatric practice. In particular, a tension chylothorax complicating a malignant airway obstruction is a rare and life-threatening complication. We report a rapidly progressing tension chylothorax associated with a cervical mass in a 10-month-old male infant. To our knowledge, the extension of a cervical mass to the supraclavear region resulting in a compressive chylothorax represents an exceptional event in pediatrics. Early recognition and prompt treatment resulted to be essential to relieve the compression and to avoid end-stage hemodynamic and respiratory function derangement.

© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.


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