Scientific article

Fatal brain gas embolism during non-invasive positive pressure ventilation

Published inBMJ case reports, vol. 2008, no. nov12 1, p. bcr0620080163-bcr0620080163
Publication date2008

Gas embolism is a dreaded complication following invasive medical procedures, traumatic lung injury and decompression accidents. We report a case of fatal gas embolism following the use of non-invasive ventilation (NIV) with bilevel positive airway pressure (BiPAP). The patient initially underwent left bronchial artery embolisation for massive haemoptysis in the context of severe tuberculotic sequels. Under NIV and after heavy coughing he became hemiparetic and his level of consciousness suddenly dropped. Computed tomography of the brain showed multiple air embolism and ischaemic lesions were confirmed by magnetic resonance imaging. Echocardiographic investigations showed no intracardiac defect. Vasculo-pulmonary abnormalities in the context of heavy coughing and non-invasive ventilation may have played a major role in the occurrence of this event. New neurological events in a patient with tuberculotic sequels or any known vascular pulmonary abnormalities and NIV should raise the suspicion of brain gas embolism.

Citation (ISO format)
RIVARA, Claire Bénédicte et al. Fatal brain gas embolism during non-invasive positive pressure ventilation. In: BMJ case reports, 2008, vol. 2008, n° nov12 1, p. bcr0620080163–bcr0620080163. doi: 10.1136/bcr.06.2008.0163
ISSN of the journal1757-790X

Technical informations

Creation06/16/2009 12:04:00 PM
First validation06/16/2009 12:04:00 PM
Update time03/14/2023 3:08:44 PM
Status update03/14/2023 3:08:44 PM
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