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J Clin Anesth. 2012 Nov;24(7):582-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jclinane.2012.03.007.

Massive pulmonary embolism in a patient undergoing Cesarean delivery.

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Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Management, Fairview Hospital, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 44111, USA.


A case of a 40 year old, 86 kg, G7P1 woman with a history of hypercoagulability, at 39.1 weeks' gestation, who presented for elective Cesarean section during spinal anesthesia, is presented. During closure of the uterus, she became unresponsive and went into asystolic cardiac arrest. During resuscitation, clinical signs suggested pulmonary embolism, as confirmed by transesophageal echocardiogram. She was anticoagulated and taken to the Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory; there, clot lysis was performed, resulting in massive bleeding. Embolization of the uterine arteries was attempted and was only partially successful in reducing the bleeding. She then underwent Cesarean hysterectomy to control the bleeding. She had a full recovery and was discharged on the sixth postoperative day.

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