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Journal Article

Citation

Maier W, Fradis M, Malatskey S, Krebs A. Ann. Otol. Rhinol. Laryngol. 1999; 108(2): 189-192.

Affiliation

Department of Otorhinolaryngology, University Hospital, Freiburg, Germany.

Copyright

(Copyright © 1999, Annals Publishing)

DOI

unavailable

PMID

10030239

Abstract

In cases of attempted suicide by hanging, a combination of mechanisms causing local destruction of the pharynx, larynx, vessels, and spine, as well as neurologic complications, has to be considered. We present a case of hanging in which a deeply unconscious patient without any palpaple pulsation of the carotid arteries was referred to our otolaryngology department. Computed tomography and angiography showed parapharyngeal air, complete obstruction of both common carotid arteries, and a compensatory circulation through the vertebral arteries. Three hours after the trauma, surgical exploration with resection of the enrolled intima of both carotid arteries and repair of the pharynx was performed. The patient awoke with an infarct of the right hemisphere with incomplete left hemiparesis the next day, but symptoms slowly declined during the following months, and the patient learned swallowing again perfectly. We conclude from our experience that in near-hanged patients a prompt onset of adequate diagnostic and therapeutic measures is mandatory, as good neurologic and functional results may occur even in cases with coma and severe destruction of the carotid arteries and pharyngeal and laryngeal structures. Surgical repair of blunt carotid lesions is recommended and may be crucial for a good outcome.


Language: en

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