Successful video-assisted mediastinoscopic drainage of descending necrotizing mediastinitis

Ann Thorac Surg. 2006 Jun;81(6):2279-81. doi: 10.1016/j.athoracsur.2005.07.096.


Descending necrotizing mediastinitis is an uncommon form of mediastinitis that can rapidly progress to septacemia. To date, the optimal surgical approach has remained controversial. We report a case of descending necrotizing mediastinitis that was treated successfully through a transcervical approach with video-assisted mediastinoscopy. In our case, because the abscess was separated into small compartments, especially in the paratracheal space, the abscess was drained using video-assisted mediastinoscopy. This less-invasive approach may be an option in the treatment of descending necrotizing mediastinitis, especially when the abscess in the paratracheal space is separated into small compartments.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Abscess / pathology
  • Abscess / surgery*
  • Aged
  • Debridement
  • Drainage* / methods
  • Dyspnea / etiology
  • Emergencies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Mediastinitis / pathology
  • Mediastinitis / surgery*
  • Mediastinoscopy*
  • Minimally Invasive Surgical Procedures
  • Neck / surgery
  • Necrosis
  • Pharyngitis / complications
  • Video-Assisted Surgery*