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Stab to second intercostal space: a bubbling extrapleural wound
  1. A Jabbar,
  2. J V Reynolds,
  3. P K Plunkett
  1. St. James’ Hospital, Dublin, Ireland
  1. Correspondence to:
 MrA Jabbar
 St. James’ Hospital, Dublin, Ireland;


A 37 year old man was found collapsed at the roadside and taken to the emergency department. Communication was difficult, as the patient could not speak English. There was a wound in the left second intercostal space on the midclavicular line, which was bleeding and was bubbling air. A drain was inserted, bleeding controlled, and his wounds sutured. Chest x ray later confirmed satisfactory placement of the drain. The following day, swelling and discharge indicated oesophageal damage, which was later confirmed by gastrografin swallow. With conservative management in hospital for 2 weeks, he made a full recovery and was discharged.

  • CXR, chest x ray

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  • Competing interests: none declared