BMJ Case Reports 2018; doi:10.1136/bcr-2016-218906
  • Rare disease

Snap, crackle and pop: when sneezing leads to crackling in the neck

Press Release
  1. Sudip Das
  1. ENT, Head and Neck Surgery, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Leicester, UK
  1. Correspondence to Miss Wanding Yang, dingyang{at}
  • Accepted 20 December 2017
  • Published 15 January 2018


Spontaneous perforation of the pharynx is an unusual condition. Due to its non-specific presentation and general lack of awareness, diagnosis and intervention may be delayed resulting in potential complications. This case reports a rare spontaneous perforation of the pyriform sinus after a forceful sneeze, leading to cervical subcutaneous emphysema and pneumomediastinum.


  • Contributors WY and RSS: literature research and cowriter of the manuscript. SD: identified the case and cowriter of the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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