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Kaohsiung J Med Sci. 2006 Dec;22(12):641-5.

Subcutaneous emphysema and pneumomediastinum secondary to dental extraction: a case report and literature review.

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  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Kaohsiung Medical University Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.


Here, we present the case of a woman who suffered from acute dyspnea and right cheek and neck swelling during molar extraction. The use of a high-speed dental drill may introduce air into the soft tissue and lead to subcutaneous emphysema and pneumomediastinum. After a review of the literature, we found that subcutaneous emphysema and pneumomediastinum are rare complications secondary to dental extraction. We report this case because physicians in the emergency department may misdiagnose the symptoms as an allergic reaction. Dentists should be more aware of air leak during dental extraction.

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