Cerebral Venous Air Embolism: A Rare Phenomenon

  • Antonio Costa Carneiro Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Priscila Diaz Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Mariana Vieira Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Isa Silva Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Marta Custodio Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Madalena Silva Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal
  • Magda Faria Internal Medicine Department, Hospital de Cascais, Cascais, Portugal

Keywords

Cerebral venous air embolism, aetiology, treatment

Abstract

Cerebral venous air embolism (CVAE) is an extremely rare phenomenon. Most reports of cerebral air embolism focus on the arterial territory, and consequently CVAE has remained poorly understood, especially regarding its pathophysiology and treatment. The authors describe an elderly male patient who was admitted through the Emergency Department with subacute confusion. A brain computed tomography (CT) showed multiple cerebral venous gas emboli. No potential causes were found apart from previous peripheral vein cannulation and intravenous medication administration. The patient received supportive treatment, with complete radiological resolution of the gas emboli, while maintaining his previous confusional state. The aim of this report is to highlight a rare and understudied entity, and discuss its causes, proposed pathophysiology and appropriate management.

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  • Published: 2019-01-23

    Issue: Vol 6 No 1 (view)

    Section: Articles

    How to cite:
    Costa Carneiro, A., Diaz, P., Vieira, M., Silva, I., Custodio, M., Silva, M., & Faria, M. (2019). Cerebral Venous Air Embolism: A Rare Phenomenon. European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine, 6(1). https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.12890/2019_001011