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Sheah K, Hui F, Wansaicheong G, Khoo M
Correspondence: Dr Kenneth Sheah, email@example.com
Retropharyngeal haematoma is a rare cause of rapid neck swelling that may result in fatal upper respiratory airway obstruction. Reported causes include trauma, surgery, retropharyngeal inflammation, carotid aneurysm, aberrant artery at the thoracic inlet and bleeding diathesis. We report a 90-year-old man who developed rapid and progressive neck swelling following a minor traumatic episode. Computed tomography showed a large low-density retropharyngeal haematoma extending from the skull base to the mediastinum, with suspected extravasation. The right vertebral artery angiogram confirmed contrast agent extravasation arising from a small branch artery. This was treated with temporary distal flow arrest and particle embolisation.
Keywords: endovascular treatment, particle embolisation, retropharyngeal haematoma, vertebral angiogram, vertebral artery haemorrhage
Singapore Med J 2006; 47(8): 719-723