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Tension pneumothorax mimicking giant emphysematous bullae
  1. Michel Gonzalez,
  2. Thorsten Krueger,
  3. Hans-Beat Ris,
  4. Jean Y Perentes
  1. Department of Thoracic and Vascular Surgery, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, Lausanne, Switzerland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Michel Gonzalez, Department of Thoracic and Vascular Surgery, University Hospital of Lausanne, Rue du Bugnon 46, Lausanne 1011, Switzerland; michel.gonzalez{at}

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A 65-year-old man was admitted with left thoracic pain and dyspnoea. One year before admission, he had undergone talc pleurodesis by thoracoscopy to manage a left recurrent pneumothorax due to tobacco-related emphysema. Chest x-ray (figure 1) and CT scan (figure 2A–C) showed clustered air pockets in between normal lung parenchyma. It was unclear whether the radiological image was due to unilateral giant emphysematous bullae or to clustered pneumothorax following talcage, with areas of lung detachment in between areas of lung adhesion …

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  • Competing interest None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; not externally peer reviewed.

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