Visual Diagnosis in Emergency Medicine| Volume 58, ISSUE 6, P959-961, June 2020

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Dysphagia After Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: A Case of Aspirated Dentures

      A 63-year old man presented to an outside hospital's emergency department (ED) with dyspnea. While in the ED he went into a pulseless electrical activity arrest, underwent 1 round of cardiopulmonary resuscitation and was intubated before the return of spontaneous circulation. The intubation was noted to be difficult because of “redundant tissue in the oropharynx.” Providers successfully placed a 6-0 endotracheal tube after failed attempts with an 8-0 endotracheal tube and bougie. The patient was treated for a presumed congestive heart failure exacerbation and multilobar pneumonia and was extubated on hospital day 1. He was noted to have marked dysphagia and dysphonia at that time. A computed tomography scan of the neck was obtained and revealed what were presumed to be 2 surgical clips in the subglottic space and at the level of the epiglottis (Figure 1, Figure 2). Asymmetry of the false vocal cords was seen and thought to be caused by scar tissue.
      Figure thumbnail gr1
      Figure 1Computed tomography scan revealing a subglottic foreign body (arrow).
      Figure thumbnail gr2
      Figure 2Sagittal view of the subglottic foreign body (arrow).
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