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A Journal on Anesthesiology, Resuscitation, Analgesia and Intensive Care

Official Journal of the Italian Society of Anesthesiology, Analgesia, Resuscitation and Intensive Care
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Minerva Anestesiologica 2002 June;68(6):561-5

language: Italian

Endotracheal tube and trachebronchial obstruction due to a large blood clot. Case report

Veronese S., Cutrone C. *, Innocente F., Ori C.

Università degli Studi - Padova Dipartimento di Farmacologia ed Anestesiologia Azienda Ospedaliera - Padova
*Unità Operativa Autonoma di Chirurgia Endoscopica delle Vie Aeree


A case of endotracheal tube and tracheobronchial acute obstruction caused by a large blood clot reproducing in part the trachea and the right bronchial tree is reported. The event has been anticipated by recurring hemoptyses whose source remained unknown despite any examination. Having established by simple manoeuvres that the obstruction was located at the endotracheal tube level, the tube was removed together with the blood clot without more invasive techniques like rigid or flexible bronchoscopy, embolectomy catheter of fibrinolytic agents. On the other side, those techniques should be used in case of obstruction located under the endotracheal tube. Albeit obstruction of endotracheal tubes due to blood clots is a frequent complication in critical care setting, this case is reported for the peculiar dimension and morphology of the clot, underlying that a precise diagnosis of the obstruction level allows the use of the most suitable technique for its removal.

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