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March 1976

Spontaneous Perforation of the Cervical Esophagus

Arch Surg. 1976;111(3):284-285. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1976.01360210078015

• A rare case of spontaneous rupture of the cervical esophagus occurred during vomiting after eating. The plain x-ray film showed air in the neck, but barium swallow did not reveal the perforation. Operation performed two days later because of bleeding consisted of suturing two rents in the anterior wall of the cervical esophagus distal to the cricopharyngeus muscle, and the patient did well. The mechanism causing such a perforation is not well understood. With the absence of bleeding, treatment would ordinarily consist of drainage without suture.

(Arch Surg 111:284-285, 1976)