Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Images in Thorax
All that wheezes is not asthma
  1. Pyng Lee1,
  2. Ze-Ying Tan1,
  3. Thanh Pham2
  1. 1 Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, National University Hospital, Singapore
  2. 2 Department of Respiratory Medicine, Cho Ray Hospital, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  1. Correspondence to Professor Pyng Lee, Division of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine, National University Hospital, Singapore 119228, Singapore; pyng_lee{at}

Statistics from

A 31-year-old man complained of intermittent wheeze, dyspnoea and hoarse voice for 2 months. He was diagnosed with asthma and prescribed inhaled corticosteroid by the general practitioner. However, his symptoms persisted despite compliance to inhaler therapy. He was a non-smoker, worked as a logger and remembered quenching his thirst at a nearby river prior to his symptoms. Physical examination revealed a well-nourished man with audible wheeze, normal vital parameters and saturating 96% on room air. Chest radiograph (CXR) was unremarkable. Flexible bronchoscopy performed for hoarse voice revealed a leech straddling the vocal cords. It was attached to the …

View Full Text


  • Contributors PL and TP: patient management and writing. Z-YT: writing and submission.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.