Severe Respiratory and Hemodynamic Failures following Successful Spontaneous Pneumothorax DrainageRead the full article
Case Reports in Emergency Medicine publishes case reports and case series related to prehospital care, disaster preparedness and response, acute medical and paediatric emergencies, critical care, sports medicine, wound care, and toxicology.
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Posttraumatic Pancreatitis Four Days after Renal Injury with Massive Retroperitoneal Hematoma
A 25-year-old man accidentally fell from a cliff and hit his right flank on the ground while camping. Initially, he was able to barely walk, but he ultimately became unable to walk at all due to severe flank pain. He had no remarkable personal or family history and was a social drinker. Upon arrival, he showed clear consciousness but was in a hemorrhagic shock state. Enhanced computed tomography (CT) revealed extravasation of contrast medium from the injured right kidney with massive retroperitoneal hematoma. He underwent massive blood transfusion and tracheal intubation followed by renal embolization. His vital signs stabilized on hospital day 2, and he was extubated on day 3. On days 4 and 5, a blood examination revealed increased levels of amylase (360 and 904 IU/L, respectively). Enhanced CT on day 5 did not show signs of severe acute pancreatitis. The maximum amylase level was 1041 IU/L on day 6 and decreased day by day without deterioration of the severity of his acute pancreatitis. He was discharged on day 14. The subacute phase of posttraumatic acute pancreatitis in the present case may have been induced not by direct injury to the pancreas but by several causative factors, such as shock, increased pressure of the retroperitoneal space, or the release of inflammatory mediators from injured tissues or hematoma.
Nearly Fatal Hydroxychloroquine Overdose Successfully Treated with Midazolam, Propofol, Sodium Bicarbonate, Norepinephrine, and Intravenous Lipid Emulsion
Background. In the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic, there has been renewed interest in the drug hydroxychloroquine. However, clinicians should be aware of the dangers of hydroxychloroquine intoxication, an insufficiently studied condition. Case Report. We present a case of autointoxication with 20 g hydroxychloroquine in a 35-year-old woman. Cardiac monitoring showed ventricular arrhythmias for which high-dose midazolam and propofol were initiated, resulting in a brief normalization of the cardiac rhythm. Because of the reoccurrence of these arrhythmias, intravenous lipid emulsion was administered with fast cardiac stabilization. Treatment with continuous norepinephrine, potassium chloride/phosphate, and sodium bicarbonate was initiated. On day 6, she was extubated and after 11 days, she was discharged from the hospital without complications. Conclusion. Since high-quality scientific evidence is lacking, treatment options are based on experience in chloroquine toxicity. Activated charcoal is advised if the patient presents early. Sedation with diazepam, early ventilation, and continuous epinephrine infusion are considered effective in treating severe intoxication. Caution is advised when substituting potassium. Despite the lack of formal evidence, sodium bicarbonate appears to be useful and safe in case of QRS widening. Intravenous lipid emulsion, with or without hemodialysis, remains controversial but appears to be safe. As a last resort, extracorporeal life support might be considered in case of persisting hemodynamic instability.
Clinical Considerations in Initial Evaluation and Treatment of Hardhead Catfish Spine Puncture Wounds
A 17-year-old male presented to our ED complaining of pain and swelling at the base of the first metacarpal after attempting to remove a catfish from his fishing line 12 hours prior to arrival. Radiographic images demonstrated a foreign body (FB), which was detectable by ultrasound. Hand surgery was consulted and took the patient to the operating room for exploration and removal of two serrated radiopaque catfish spines that were deeply embedded in the left thumb. Conclusion. Penetrating injury from hardhead catfish (Ariopsis felis) spines can cause hidden FB, envenomation, infection, and secondary damage to nearby structures. Imaging should be done for these patients to ensure they obtain timely and complete extraction of the venomous structures. Surgery should be consulted for operative management to avoid damage on removal of the catfish spine remnants.
ACE Inhibitor Induced Isolated Angioedema of the Small Bowel: A Rare Complication of a Common Medication
Angioedema is a subcutaneous or submucosal tissue swelling due to capillary leakage and transudation of fluid into the interstitial tissue. It can be localized or generalized as part of a widespread reaction known as anaphylaxis. Millions of people in United States and all over the world receive ACEI antihypertensive therapy. ACEI is known to cause angioedema with an incidence of 0.7 percent. We present a case of 40-year-old female who was started on lisinopril three days prior to presentation for newly diagnosed hypertension. She presented with nonspecific severe abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. She denied having difficulty breathing or swelling anywhere in the body. On exam, she did not have facial, lip, tongue, or throat swelling. Her abdomen was tender without guarding or rigidity. Laboratory examination was unrevealing except for mild leukocytosis. Computed tomography scan (CT scan) of the abdomen with oral and IV contrast revealed a moderate amount of ascites with diffuse wall thickening, hyperenhancement, and mucosal edema of the entire small bowel. In the absence of any other pathology, matching history, and imaging findings highly suggestive of angioedema, she was diagnosed with isolated small bowel angioedema as a result of ACEI therapy. She was managed conservatively, and lisinopril was discontinued. A week later on follow-up, all her symptoms had resolved, and repeat CT scan showed resolution of all findings.
A Case of Bedside Ultrasound in COVID-19 to Prognosticate Functional Lung Recovery
Introduction. The fight against COVID-19 poses questions as to the clinical presentation, course, diagnosis, and treatment of the condition. This case study presents a patient infected with COVID-19 and suggests with additional research, that bedside ultrasound may be used to diagnose severity of disease and potentially, prognosticate functional lung recovery without using unnecessary resources and exposing additional healthcare professionals to infection. Case Report. A 46-year-old male presented to the emergency department (ED) with cough, fever, and shortness of breath. Chest X-ray showed patchy airspace opacities bilaterally. Rapid testing resulted positive for SARS-CoV-2. Bedside ultrasound showed abnormal lung parenchyma, with diffuse comet tail artifacts, consistent with interstitial pulmonary edema. Following a prolonged intubation, patient’s abnormal lung ultrasound findings are resolved.
Failure of Nonoperative Management following Angioembolization for Blunt Splenic and Pancreatic Tail Injury
Background. Over several decades, standard management of blunt spleen injury (BSI) has been changed from operative intervention to the selective operative and nonoperative management (NOM). However, some patient needs laparotomy first. This article describes a case of a BSI patient who failed nonoperative management after angioembolization (AE). Case Presentation. A 58-year-old man fell from his motorcycle and was brought to our hospital. His vital sign was stable after extracellular fluid bolus. A contrast-enhanced computed tomography scan of the abdomen showed AAST grade V spleen injury. AE was performed for the splenic artery, but his systolic blood pressure suddenly dropped under 60 mmHg. The resuscitative endovascular balloon occlusion of the aorta was inserted, and immediate laparotomy was performed. A pancreatic tail injury was detected, and the splenic artery and vein were burst at the pancreatic tail and controlled by hemostatic suture. After splenectomy, a drain was placed at the pancreatic tail and the abdomen was temporally closed. The postoperative course was not remarkable except for abdominal abscess treated with antibiotics, and he was discharged on foot. Conclusion. Although NOM is becoming one of the choices for severe BSI, there will still be a patient who requires surgery. Surgeons should be aware of the mechanism of injury and the limitation of AE as an adjunct to NOM. Patient selection for initial NOM and timing to convert to laparotomy are important.