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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 19(3); 2008 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2008;19(3): 346-348.
Lingual Hematoma Secondary to Tongue Biting During Convulsion - a Life-threatening Complication and Emergency Airway Management
Young Soon Cho, Ho Jung Kim, Hoon Lim
Department of Emergency Medicine, SoonChunHyang University Hospital, Bucheon, Korea. choyoungsoon@hanafos.com
Traumatic lingual hematoma is a rare condition but can be a life-threatening complication. Upper airway obstruction is a threat until glossomegaly subsides, which may take several days. We report a case of lingual hematoma secondary to tongue biting during convulsion. A 51-year-old male was admitted to an emergency medical center with a complain of loss of consciousness. In the emergency medical center, he fell into a second convulsion and bit his own tongue. Physical examination demonstrated obstructed upper airway noises, the presence of blood in and around the mouth and massive tongue swelling. The patient was tachypneic and oxygen saturation dropped rapidly despite of assisted bagvalve mask ventilation. Direct larnygoscopic orotracheal intubation was attempted but failed, and cricothyrotomy was eventually performed. The patient was discharged without any complications after 17 days. This case represents a previously unreported cause of acute tongue swelling, and we discuss the emergency airway management.
Key words: Hematoma, Tongue, Airway obstruction
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