Doctors amazed after man coughs up blood clot of lung bronchial tree

Leslie Hanson
December 8, 2018

In a medically-worded tweet, the NEJM explained what happened.

Last week, a hospitalized California man coughed up an intact cast of part of his right lung, a colossal blood clot almost six inches wide.

Despite the best efforts of intensive care staff at the University of California San Francisco Medical Center, the man died a week later.

"After a ventricular assist device was placed and anticoagulation therapy initiated, haemoptysis developed, and he expectorated a cast of the right bronchial tree", the journal wrote.

The patient had a violent coughing fit in hospital a week after surgery to fit him with a pacemaker in case his heart became blocked.

Georg Wieselthaler, a transplant and pulmonary surgeon at UCSF, told the Atlantic his team was easily able to identify the origin of the clot, it was so detailed.


Over the course of a week, the patient had progressed to coughing up phlegm and blood, and during a particularly extreme bout coughed up an intact cast of the right bronchial tree.

"We were astonished", Dr Wieselthaler said. But because these machines can also increase the risk of blood clots, he was prescribed a blood-thinner medication.

Sadly, the patient died a week later from complications of heart failure.

More specifically it's a six-inch-wide, unbroken cast of the right bronchial tree, part of the tubular network that distributes air to the lungs.

Wieselthaler called the occurrence "very, very, very rare". But it's not anything fantastically fictional - it's a real blood clot that came out of the body of human being and is the exact shape of a lung passage.

A 40-year-old woman with asthma presented with a 2-day history of pleuritic pain of acute onset in the right side of the chest.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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