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Ear Nose Throat J. 2002 Apr;81(4):234-6, 238-40, 242 passim.

Bilateral Lemierre's syndrome: a case report and literature review.

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Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Suite 2900 TVC, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN 37232-5555, USA.


Lemierre's syndrome is characterized by thrombosis of the internal jugular vein that develops following an oropharyngeal infection. Sepsis and septic metastases frequently ensue and affect the lungs, the musculoskeletal system, and occasionally the liver. Most cases are caused by infection with Fusobacterium necrophorum. This infection responds to antibiotic therapy with beta-lactamase-resistant compounds that exert good anaerobic coverage. Anticoagulation and surgical intervention can be helpful in advanced cases. Fewer than 160 cases of classic Lemierre's syndrome have been described; approximately one-third of these reported cases have occurred since 1988. We describe a new case of Lemierre's syndrome that occurred in an otherwise healthy 27-year-old man. Thrombosis of both internal jugular veins extended through the subclavian system and into both upper extremities. The patient was treated with intravenous antibiotics and heparin during 14 days of hospitalization. He was discharged on oral clindamycin and warfarin sodium, and after 6 months he was able to return to full activity. To our knowledge, this is the first reported case of Lemierre's syndrome in which internal jugular vein thrombosis occurred bilaterally. By reporting this previously undescribed manifestation of Lemierre's syndrome, we hope to increase practitioner awareness of this disease entity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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