Thorac cardiovasc Surg 1999; 47(3): 199-202
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-1013144
Case Report

© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Tube Thoracostomy Complicates Unrecognized Diaphragmatic Rupture

J. Zieren1 , Ch. Enzweiler2 , J. M. Müller1
  • 1Department of Surgery, Charité, Humboldt University of Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  • 2Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Charité, Humboldt University of Berlin, Berlin, Germany
Further Information

Publication History


Publication Date:
19 March 2008 (online)


A case of traumatic diaphragmatic rupture is reported in which herniated stomach mimicked a tension pneumothorax. Tube thoracostomy by trocar caused insertion of the pleural drain into the intrathoracic stomach. CT scan of the thorax after oral administration of contrast material revealed the correct diagnosis. After removal of the drain and retraction of the stomach into the abdomen the gastric perforation and diaphragmatic defect could be closed by suture. The further course of the patient was uneventful. This case report underlines the importance of differential diagnosis of symptoms in a case with a history of blunt chest trauma and shows the risks of unnecessary use of a trocar.