Subcutaneous emphysema with Ginkgo leaf sign

Case contributed by Dr Bita Abbasi


Patient with traumatic pneumothorax

On the CXR, a left sided hydropneumothorax and chest tube is seen.

Note the presence of extensive subcutaneous emphysema, outlining the fibers of the left pectoralis muscle.

 Subcutaneous emphysema with Ginkgo leaf sign illustrated.

Author: Em?ke Dénes  (2011)

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Case Discussion

In the extensive subcutaneous emphysema, air outlines the major pectoralis muscle fibers and creates a branching pattern known as Ginkgo leaf sign.

The ginkgo tree is native to china and has fan shaped leaves with prominent visible veins.  The air between the muscle fibers of the pectoralis muscle mimic the appearances of these veins.


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Case information

rID: 22549
Published: 6th Apr 2013
Last edited: 2nd Nov 2015
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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