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Indian J Chest Dis Allied Sci. 2003 Oct-Dec;45(4):265-8.

Fatal pyothorax: a rare complication of retropharyngeal abscess.

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  • 1Department of Otolaryngology, Pt. B.D. Sharma PGIMS, Rohtak, India.


Fatal pyothorax following a massive acute retropharyngeal abscess in an adult is reported. Acute non-tuberculous retropharyngeal abscess usually develops following a penetrating injury due to a foreign body or endoscopy. Microbial isolates are mixed and consists of aerobic and anaerobic organisms. It may lead on to mediastinitis since there is a potential communication between the two spaces. Immediate cervical, pleural and mediastinal surgical drainage along with appropriate antibiotics can be life saving.

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