The Teaching Point

Arterial air embolism is a rare, non-predictable and non-avoidable potentially severe complication of percutaneous lung biopsies. It is exceedingly rare but might be associated with high morbidity and mortality and therefore all interventional radiologists who perform this procedure must be prepared for detection on procedural images and adequate management.






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From the manuscript

Systemic Air Embolism after Percutaneous Lung Biopsy: A Manageable Complication

Free full text article: Systemic Air Embolism after Percutaneous Lung Biopsy: A Manageable Complication

Abstract
CT-guided percutaneous biopsy is a resourceful and widely used tool to evaluate pulmonary nodules that frequently avoids costly and unnecessary surgeries. Severe complications occur in less than 1% of cases and include gas embolism, which is rarely documented. We report a case of gas embolism after transthoracic biopsies and discuss the pathophysiology and the benefits of early diagnosis and proper management.






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