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Pulmonary Embolism Nonspecific CXR Signs

January 25, 2008

Pulmonary embolism is a condition that occurs when an artery in your lung becomes blocked. In most cases, the blockage is caused by one or more blood clots that travel to your lungs from another part of your body.

Most clots originate in your legs, but they can also form in arm veins, the right side of your heart or even at the tip of a catheter placed in a vein. There are other rare causes of clots as well.

In most cases, a pulmonary embolism isn’t fatal. Still, pulmonary embolism is a leading cause of hospital deaths and an increasing threat to passengers on long airplane flights. You can take measures to help prevent pulmonary embolism. And when pulmonary embolism does occur, treatment with anti-clotting medications can greatly reduce the risk of death. Source: mayo clinic

The are two CXR sign that are not very specific.

1. Hampton’s hump (wedge shaped lung infarct after PE).

The best CXR picture (this sign is better seen on CT of the chest) I found, can be seen here…

2. Westermark’s sign.

The best CXR picture I found on the web showing very well Westermark’s sign, can be seen here…

I haven’t seen neither one of both signs in my medical practise. Has anybody seen them. My second question is what is the single most important thing about Pulmonary Embolism you should know?

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 15, 2008 7:04 pm

    anticoagulate early

  2. Boiboi permalink
    May 5, 2012 9:57 am

    **** a duck

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