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J Spinal Disord Tech. 2003 Dec;16(6):519-23.

Delayed esophageal injury without instrumentation failure: complication of anterior cervical instrumentation.

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  • 1Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics, 600 E. Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53792, USA.


The authors describe a case of a 67-year-old man who presented with a delayed esophageal perforation 4 years after anterior cervical spine surgery for spondylotic myelopathy. Diagnosis was made with esophagoscopic visualization of the lesion and repair performed with hardware removal and esophageal closure utilizing a sternocleidomastoid muscle flap. The pertinent literature is reviewed and the therapeutic implications discussed.

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