Steeple sign (trachea)

Last revised by Ciléin Kearns on 10 Jan 2023

The steeple sign (also called the wine bottle sign, and inverted V sign), refers to the tapering of the upper trachea on a frontal chest radiograph reminiscent of a church steeple, suggestive of croup. A corresponding lateral x-ray would show narrowing of the subglottic trachea and ballooning of the hypopharynx.

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: steeple of Salisbury cathedral
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  • Case 1: croup with steeple sign
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  • Case 2
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  • Case 3
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  • Case 4
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  • Case 5
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