Nasogastric tube in bronchus

Case contributed by A.Prof Frank Gaillard


Elderly patient with multiple medical problems, and swallowing difficulties.

Patient Data

Age: 80 years
Gender: Male

Chest X-ray

CXR demonstrates the nasogastric tube in the left lower lobe bronchus. Note how continued pushing of the tube forwards, resulted in a segment of the tube to fold into an adjacent bronchus.

Case Discussion

Nasogastric tubes are common in hospitalised patients, and are in most cases relatively easy to insert. In a number of cases however they do find their way into the bronchial tree, and in debilitated patients, this can be surprisingly asymptomatic. As such a nasogastric tube should not be used for feeding of administration of medication until its location in the stomach has been confirmed. 

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Case information

rID: 14264
Published: 11th Jul 2011
Last edited: 16th Jul 2018
Tag: ngt
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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