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Liu L.-H.,The Linyi Cancer Hospital | Yang X.-F.,The Linyi Peoples Hospital
Oncology Letters | Year: 2016

A 20-year-old male presented to hospital with blood in the mucus, which had occurred for 6 months, and was diagnosed with nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC). Due to passive smoking, the patient developed a constant and violent cough, pain behind the right ear and swelling of the retropharynx. The results of a computed tomography scan, which was performed during re-examination of the patient, revealed that the right lymphonodi retropharynici had decreased in size and the hypodense shadow of the prevertebral space had become clear. Therefore, the retropharyngeal pressure was suspected to be increased due to the violent cough. Consequently, the increased pressure may have caused the swollen lymph nodes on the right side of the pharynx to break, which allowed the necrotic liquid to seep into the prevertebral space and result in effusion. Subsequent to 5 days of treatment with methylprednisolone (40 mg ivgtt qd, d1-5), the results from the cone bean computed tomography examination, which had been performed prior to radiotherapy, indicated that the retropharyngeal swelling had improved and the prevertebral space had returned to normal. To the best of our knowledge, the present study is the first reported case of effusion in the prevertebral space caused by the breaking of swollen lymphonodi retropharynici in NPC. The present study acts as a reminder of the possible delays in the treatments for head and neck tumor patients that demonstrate swollen retropharyngeal lymph nodes due to the occurrence of effusion in the prevertebral space. © 2016, Oncology Letters. All Rights reserved. Source

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