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CASE REPORT
Congenital lobar emphysema: diagnostic and therapeutic challenges
  1. James Jackson Mulvany1,2,
  2. Andrew Weatherall3,
  3. Amanda Charlton4,
  4. Hiran Selvadurai5
  1. 1Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, New South Wales, Australia
  2. 2John Hunter Children's Hospital, Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
  3. 3Department of Anaesthesiology, Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, New South Wales, Australia
  4. 4Department of Histopathology, Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, New South Wales, Australia
  5. 5Department of Respiratory Medicine, Children's Hospital at Westmead, Westmead, New South Wales, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Dr James Jackson Mulvany, jamesjmulvany{at}gmail.com

Summary

Congenital lobar emphysema (CLE), a rare condition that usually presents in the neonatal period, can be a diagnostic and therapeutic challenge for the treating clinician. If unrecognised, it is a significant risk at the time of anaesthetic induction. We describe a case of CLE in a 3-month-old boy who was initially treated for suspected aspiration pneumonia at the referring hospital. We highlight the importance of careful consideration of common childhood respiratory illness as well as pneumothorax in the differential diagnosis, and the significance of appropriate preoperative anaesthetic management. We also emphasise the importance of acknowledging a mother's concerns when taking a paediatric history.

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