GERALD P. BODEY, M.D.
Mediastinal emphysema is characterized by the presence of air in the mediastinum, and has been recognized at least since 1819, when Laennec described it under the title of "interlobular emphysema" as follows: "This affectation is characterized by infiltration of air between the lobules of the lung. . . . When the extravasation exists near the roots of the lungs, it speedily extends to the mediastinum, and from thence crosses to the neck and over the whole subcutaneous and intermuscular cellular substance of the body."1 In 1939 Hamman2 reported seven cases of spontaneous mediastinal emphysema—that is, mediastinal emphysema occurring in
BODEY GP. MEDICAL MEDIASTINAL EMPHYSEMA1. Ann Intern Med. 1961;54:46–56. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-54-1-46
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1961;54(1):46-56.
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