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Authors Macke RA, Foxwell T, Luketich JD, Nason KS
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Journal Ann. Thorac. Surg. Volume: 99 Issue: 2 Pages: e31-5
Publish Date 2015 Feb
PubMed ID 25639441
PMC ID 4384180

Development of a tracheopharyngeal fistula after pharyngeal perforation is an uncommon occurrence. As a result, published guidance for management of this rare type of aerodigestive tract fistula is limited. We describe the workup and management of a traumatic tracheopharyngeal fistula caused by foreign body impaction. A conservative, endoscopic treatment strategy with broad-spectrum antibiotics, transnasal drainage, and covered tracheal stent placement was used. The stent was removed after 4 weeks, and complete closure of the fistula tract was confirmed by endoscopy and contrast esophagram. Although tracheopharyngeal fistulae are rare and operative treatment can be complex, this case demonstrates that conservative management with antibiotics, drainage, and endoscopic stenting can be successful in select patients.

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