Article Text

Unusual presentation of more common disease/injury
Recurrent episodes of upper airway blockage associated with Ascaris lumbricoides causing cardiopulmonary arrest in a young patient
  1. Shahid Javed Husain1,
  2. Ali Bin Sarwar Zubairi1,
  3. Nabeel Sultan2,
  4. Muhammad Asim Beg3,
  5. Vikram Mehraj3
  1. 1Aga Khan University, Medicine, Stadium Road, PO Box 3500, Karachi, Sindh, 74800, Pakistan
  2. 2Aga Khan University, Anesthesia, Stadium Road, PO Box 3500, Karachi, 74800, Pakistan
  3. 3Aga Khan University, Microbiology, Stadium Road, PO Box 3500, Karachi, 74800, Pakistan
  1. Ali Bin Sarwar Zubairi, ali.zubairi{at}


Ascaris lumbricoides (AL) is one of the most common helminthic infections of humans, affecting mainly children and malnourished individuals residing in developing countries. It is estimated the 25% of the world’s population is infected with this nematode. Infection occurs via ingestion of water and food contaminated by Ascaris eggs, causing asymptomatic infection to disease with abdominal pain, vomiting, constipation and faecal passage of worms. The present report concerns an unusual case in which AL travelled retrograde and lodged in the vocal cords causing upper airway obstruction leading to asystolic cardiac arrest.

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  • Competing interests: None.

  • Patient consent: Patient/guardian consent was obtained for publication.