Lymphocoele of the thoracic duct

Case contributed by Dr Eric F Greif


Palpable left supraclavicular mass.

Patient Data

Age: 75 years
Gender: Female

CT of the neck

Non-enhancing, tubular/multicystic, multicompartmental, water density structure extending from the left supraclavicular region and inferiorly to the left paraesophageal (posterior mediastinum) region to the level of the aortic arch. The lesion is displacing the sternocleidomastoid/internal jugular vein anteriorly and the trachea/esophagus to the right.


CT of the thorax

Tubular/multicystic, multicompartmental, water density structure extends from the left side of the neck and continues to form several cystic/tubular areas in the posterior mediastinum to the retrocrural region in the location of the cisterna chyli.

Annotated image

Dilated thoracic duct.

Case Discussion

This patient had long standing soft palpable mass in the left side of the neck. A neck CT with IV contrast was performed and the lesion was believed to be a lymphangioma. Subsequently, a non-contrast chest CT was performed and the tubular/cystic mass extended from the left neck to the posterior mediastinum and to the level of the cisterna chyli, consistent with a lymphocele of the thoracic duct.

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Case information

rID: 53808
Published: 7th Jun 2017
Last edited: 16th Jul 2018
System: Chest
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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