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September 1971

Rupture of the Intrathoracic Esophagus by Compressed Air Blast

Author Affiliations

Mason City, Iowa
From the Department of General Surgery, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, Mason City, Iowa.

Arch Surg. 1971;103(3):417-419. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1971.01350090099023

In an unusual case of spontaneous rupture of the midthoracic esophagus by direct compressed air blast, a sudden jet of air directed from an exploding automobile tire entered the oropharynx, creating a massive increase in the oral and upper esophageal pressure with a laceration of the buccal mucosa of the lower lip and a rupture of the midthoracic esophagus. The patient was treated successfully with transthoracic primary repair of the rupture. Surgical intervention is the treatment of choice.