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Intractable Rare Dis Res. 2019 Aug;8(3):221-223. doi: 10.5582/irdr.2019.01080.

Successful percutaneous computed tomography guided drainage of mediastinal abscess in esophageal perforation.

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CHI Health, Creighton University, Omaha, NE, USA.


Esophageal perforation with subsequent development of a mediastinal abscess is a well-known clinical entity. Etiologies including idiopathic and iatrogenic with invasive procedures have been reported in medical literatures. This condition is seriously associated with high co-morbidity and in some cases especially if intervention has not been applied associated with high mortality. For long time, open surgical intervention was the only available treatment modality for esophageal perforation with subsequent development of a mediastinal abscess. However, recently there are some other less invasive modalities that have been used with comparable if not preferable success including; self-expandable metallic or plastic stents and imaging guided percutaneous drainage of the mediastinal abscess combined with stenting. We report a patient who presented with esophageal perforation complicated with a mediastinal abscess that was treated successfully with an imaging guided percutaneous drainage of the mediastinal abscess. This case is to emphasize on the fact that endoscopic stent placement is safe and effective for esophageal perforations. Percutaneous CT-guided drainage of associated mediastinal abscesses is an uncommon procedure, but the results suggest that it is associated with high technical and clinical success rates. There should be increased involvement of interventional radiology in the management of those cases.


CT guided drainage; Esophageal perforation; mediastinal abscess

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