Bilateral Bochdalek Hernias Presenting as Respiratory Failure in an Elderly Patient

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Abstract:

Bochdalek hernia occurs from a congenital defect of the diaphragm, allowing the passage of abdominal structures into the thoracic cavity, limiting lung expansion and ventilatory function. Bochdalek hernia is common in neonates but rarely occur in adults; there are only 4 documented cases in the elderly population. We present a case of an 88-year-old woman with severe hypoxia and respiratory failure that required ventilatory support, in whom bilateral Bochdalek hernias progressed over the years and severely invaded the thoracic cavity, causing acute decompensation. This is a rare condition in adults but can cause substantial morbidity when the involvement of the thoracic cavity is severe.

Keywords: Bochdalek; diaphragmatic hernia; elderly; respiratory failure

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4187/respcare.00817

Affiliations: Department of Internal Medicine and Pulmonary Diseases, St Luke’s–Roosevelt Hospital Center, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, New York, USA

Publication date: May 1, 2011

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