Tension pneumomediastinum: a literal form of chest tightness

David J. Clancy, Andrew S. Lane*, Peter W. Flynn, Ian M. Seppelt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Tension pneumomediastinum is a rare and life-threatening complication of mediastinal emphysema which can occur with mechanical ventilation. We present a case of tension mediastinum associated with mechanical ventilation in a patient with Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome due to Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia. We discuss the mechanism and pathophysiology of tension pneumomediastinum, the potential association with Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia and recruitment manouvres, and its definitive emergency treatment.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-56
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the Intensive Care Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • pneumatocele
  • Pneumocystic jirovecii pneumonia
  • Pneumomediastinum
  • recruitment manoeuvres

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