We report the case of a 71-year-old woman with end-stage chronic obstructive pulmonary disease who presented with a 10-cm tracheal laceration from a presumed traumatic intubation in the setting of respiratory distress and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease exacerbation and subsequently developed significant subcutaneous emphysema along her neck and mediastinum in addition to her peritoneum and mesentery. We were successfully able to treat this patient conservatively up until the time that tracheostomy was warranted. We discuss and review tracheobronchial injuries with respect to etiology, risk factors, and management and hope to benefit health care providers managing airways in patients at risk for tracheal injury.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine