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Article
June 5, 1987

Migratory Pseudopneumothorax

Author Affiliations

Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University Winston-Salem, NC

Bowman Gray School of Medicine of Wake Forest University Winston-Salem, NC

JAMA. 1987;257(21):2917. doi:10.1001/jama.1987.03390210065018
Abstract

To the Editor. —  Everyone reading chest x-ray films should be aware that in a supine view a skin fold can mimic a pneumothorax, but I was somewhat surprised to see the case report entitled "Migratory Pseudopneumothorax" in JAMA.1 The patient was spared the insertion of two chest tubes because she rolled or leaned slightly to the other side when the second chest roentgenogram was taken, causing the radiographic skin fold (pseudopneumothorax) to move to the opposite side. Does this mean that if she had not leaned the other way and the skin-fold "shadow" had persisted on the same side, she would have had a chest tube inserted in that side?I hope not. Radiologists have long been aware of skin folds mimicking pneumothoraces on anteroposterior chest films taken when the patient is in the supine or semierect position. The edge characteristics of the two are different and careful

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