Boerhaave Syndrome in an Elderly Man

  • Maria João Rodrigues Ferreira Pinto Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • Pedro Rodrigues Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • Leonor Almeida Pneumology Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • Alexandra Leitão Internal Medicine Department, Hospital Santa Maria Maior, Barcelos, Portugal
  • Luís Flores Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • André Gomes Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • Gonçalo Rocha Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal
  • Fernando Friões Internal Medicine Department, Centro Hospitalar de São João, Porto, Portugal

Keywords

Oesophageal perforation, Boerhaave syndrome, pneumothorax, pleural effusion

Abstract

Boerhaave syndrome is rare, has an non-specific clinical presentation and most commonly develops after persistent vomiting. Septic shock dominates the clinical picture as a result of extensive infection of the mediastinum and pleural and abdominal cavities. The current management of Boerhaave syndrome includes conservative, endoscopic and surgical treatments. The authors present the case of a 94-year-old man admitted to hospital with community-acquired pneumonia with mild respiratory insufficiency complicated by oesophageal perforation after an episode of vomiting and the development of a large left pleural effusion. An endoscopic approach with the placement of an oesophageal prosthesis was chosen given the advanced age of the patient. The hospital stay was complicated by pleural effusion infection requiring broad-spectrum antibiotics and prosthesis substitution. The patient was discharged after 60 days of hospitalization, without the need for oxygen supplementation, and scoring 80% on the Karnofsky Performance Status Scale. The increase in average life expectancy requires a case-by-case approach, where the benefits of invasive manoeuvres and likelihood of discharge are weighed against an acceptable quality of life, aiming to prevent futile medical treatment.

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  • Published: 2018-09-20

    Issue: Vol 5 No 10 (view)

    Section: Articles

    How to cite:
    Pinto, M. J., Rodrigues, P., Almeida, L., Leitão, A., Flores, L., Gomes, A., Rocha, G., & Friões, F. (2018). Boerhaave Syndrome in an Elderly Man. European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine, 5(10). https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.12890/2018_000944