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Case Reports in Oncological Medicine
Volume 2017, Article ID 3016517, 4 pages
Case Report

Pneumocephalus after the Treatment of an Inoperable Superior Sulcus Tumor with Chemoradiation

1Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS, USA
2Department of Radiology, University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Ashley Albert; ude.cmu@treblaa

Received 7 August 2017; Accepted 7 November 2017; Published 26 November 2017

Academic Editor: Didier Frappaz

Copyright © 2017 Ashley Albert et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Pneumocephalus is a rare phenomenon that can occur as a complication after operations involving the thoracic discs, following thoracotomy for tumor resection, and after an intracranial operation or cranial trauma. This complication frequently occurs when a tumor is located in the costovertebral angle and an operative intervention creates a tear in the dura resulting in a pleural-dural fistula. Case Presentation. We describe the case of a 58-year-old man with an inoperable superior sulcus tumor who developed pneumocephalus after the initiation of chemoradiation secondary to a pleural-dural fistula. Conclusions. Although a rare occurrence, pneumocephalus should be considered when patients with tumors in the superior sulcus treated with radiation develop neurologic symptoms characteristic of increased intracranial pressure.