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Korean Journal of Anesthesiology 2008;54(3):356-358.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.4097/kjae.2008.54.3.356   
Retropharyngeal Abscess after an Unexpected Difficult Tracheal Intubation: A case report.
Kyung Sil Im, Jae Myeong Lee, Jong Bun Kim, Min Hye Lee, Duk Ja Kim, Hyun Ju Jung
Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. anedoc@catholic.ac.kr
A retropharyngeal abscess is a rare complication of tracheal intubation.A case of retropharyngeal abscess after unexpected difficult tracheal intubation is presented with a review of the medical literature.A 45-year-old female patient underwent excision and biopsy of the left false vocal cord mass under general anesthesia with tracheal intubation.There was unexpected difficulty of the tracheal intubation and several trials of intubations were performed.The patient complained of pain on the left side of the neck, a sore throat, dysphagia, and chest discomfort one day postoperatively.The patient had fever of 38.7degrees C.Flexible laryngoscopy, neck X-ray, neck computed tomography, and pharyngoesophagographic studies were performed, which revealed a retropharyngeal abscess.The patient was treated with antibiotics, nil per os, nasogastric tube feeding and underwent surgery for incision and drainage of the retropharyngeal abscess under local anesthesia.The patient recovered without complications, and the patient was discharged 12 days postoperatively.
Key Words: complication; difficult tracheal intubation; retropharyngeal abscess


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