Spontaneous cervical and mediastinal emphysema in asthma

Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 1987 Oct;113(10):1111-2. doi: 10.1001/archotol.1987.01860100089030.


Patients with mediastinal emphysema and free air in the cervical region often present to an emergency medicine department, where an otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeon may be consulted for a surgical opinion. These occasions underscore the necessity that the disease be thoroughly understood and that conservative management be executed. Two patients with asthma, a 16-year-old boy and a 20-year-old man, were found on roentgenograms to have retropharyngeal free air and mediastinal emphysema. They were treated conservatively, and both recovered rapidly.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Asthma / complications*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mediastinal Emphysema / diagnostic imaging
  • Mediastinal Emphysema / etiology*
  • Mediastinal Emphysema / physiopathology
  • Mediastinal Emphysema / therapy
  • Radiography