Malpositioned nasogastric tube complicated by pneumothorax

Case contributed by Alexandra Stanislavsky
Diagnosis certain


NGT replaced, check position.

Patient Data

Age: 80

The NGT has been placed far down the left bronchial tree and the tip is in the left costophrenic recess.   There is a probable small left pneumothorax.  The large right pneumothorax (new since the previous chest x-ray - not shown) is presumably due to initial insertion into the right bronchial tree.

Case Discussion

This case highlights the potential significant adverse effects of nasogastric tube placement, and of the importance of clinical training and of early radiographic review.

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