ALLAN D. ERICKSON, M.D.; RICHARD S. IRWIN, M.D.; CARL TEPLITZ, M.D.; WILLIAM M. CORRAO, M.D.; JOSEPH T. TARPEY, M.D.
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Although transbronchoscopic lung biopsy generally causes little morbidity, life-threatening complications have been noted (1). Cerebral air embolism, not previously reported, is described here.
A 48-year-old man with known alcoholic liver disease and chronic bronchitis was admitted with increasing weakness and shortness of breath of 2 weeks' duration. At physical examination, his oral temperature was 38.3 °C and respirations 24/min. Jaundice and scattered wheezes were noted bilaterally. Hematocrit was 33% and leukocyte count 5400/mm3. Arterial PO2 was 59 torr and PCO2, 26 torr (room air). Chest roentgenogram showed diffuse, uniform, finely nodular infiltrates. Skin test with intermediate strength tuberculin (purified protein
ERICKSON AD, IRWIN RS, TEPLITZ C, et al. Cerebral Air Embolism Complicating Transbronchoscopic Lung Biopsy. Ann Intern Med. 1979;90:937–938. doi: https://doi.org/10.7326/0003-4819-90-6-937
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 1979;90(6):937-938.
Neurology, Pulmonary/Critical Care.
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Print ISSN: 0003-4819 | Online ISSN: 1539-3704
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