Vagal nerve stimulator

Case contributed by Hilary Bowman


History of seizure disorder s/p vagal nerve stimulator and h/o testicular cancer, now on surveillance

Patient Data

Age: 30 years
Gender: Male

1. Left-sided vagal nerve stimulator projects over the left upper zone and its single lead courses into the left neck at C6-C7 level in appropriate and stable position.

2. No discrete focal lung nodule, focal pneumonia, pleural effusion or pneumothorax. 

3. Mild bilateral peribronchial thickening.

4. The heart and central pulmonary vascularity appear normal considering technique.

5. No acute osseous findings. No discrete focal suspicious lesion.

6. The upper abdomen appears normal.

Case Discussion

Vagus nerve stimulators (VNS) can be used in select patients to treat refractory epilepsy. A VNS is not to be confused with a cardiac pacemaker, though they can appear similarly as both devices contain a subcutaneous battery-powered generator. For VNS, a single lead is most commonly placed around the left vagus nerve in the carotid sheath, as seen in this patient.

Notably, no new lesions suspicious for malignancy are detected on this surveillance study for testicular cancer.

This case was submitted with supervision and input from:

Soni C. Chawla, M.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Radiological Sciences
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Olive View - UCLA Medical Center

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