Journal of ISSN: 2376-0060JLPRR

Lung, Pulmonary & Respiratory Research
Perspective
Volume 3 Issue 5 - 2016
Intrathoracic Gossypiboma: 2 Case Reports and Review of the Literature
Askin Gulsen*
Department of Pulmonary Diseases, Germany
Received: August 17, 2016 | Published: September 23, 2016
*Corresponding author: Askin Gulsen, Department of Pulmonary Diseases, Westküstenklinikum Heide, Germany, Tel: +90 545 5969708; Email:
Citation: Gulsen A (2016) Intrathoracic Gossypiboma: 2 Case Reports and Review of the Literature. J Lung Pulm Respir Res 3(5): 00100. DOI: 10.15406/jlprr.2016.03.00100

Abstract

Intrathoracic gossypiboma (IG) is a sponge inadvertently left in the thoracic cavity during surgery, also referred to as a retained surgical sponge, textiloma, gauzoma, muslinoma or cottonoid. Although gossypibomas are most frequently reported after abdominal surgery, they are occasionally associated with cardiac or pulmonary surgery. Although the actual incidence of IG is not precisely known, its estimated incidence is 1 case per 1,000–10,000 surgeries. Here we report two cases of IG treated in our hospital along with a systematic review of the current literature. The literature review revealed that patients can be misdiagnosed with ailments such as aspergilloma, bronchial carcinoma, bronchiectasis, hydatid cyst, and empyema. The average time from the initial surgery to diagnosis is 6.9 yr (range, 3 wk to 52 yr). The patient often presents with asymptomatic complaints such as cough, pain, vomiting or fever in the early postoperative period. Cases with a history of intrathoracic surgery should be assessed for possible IG in differential diagnosis of new masses. To avoid morbidity, it is very important that sponges used during operations be counted carefully and that radiopaque sponges be used.

Keywords: Gossypiboma; Intrathoracic surgery; Differential diagnosis; Retained sponge; Complication

Introduction

Intrathoracic gossypiboma (IG) is a sponge inadvertently left in the thoracic cavity during surgery [1], also referred to as a retained surgical sponge/swap, gauzoma, muslinoma, textiloma, or cottonoid. Although gossypibomas are most frequently reported after abdominal surgery, they are occasionally associated with cardiac or pulmonary surgery. IGs lead to serious surgical complications and are considered medical errors; thus, they are likely under-reported for medicolegal reasons [2]. Although the actual incidence of IG is not precisely known, its estimated incidence is 1 case per 1,000–10,000 surgeries [3]. A review of PubMed identified about 20 cases of IG worldwide. A systematic review of the literature on IG revealed that patients can be misdiagnosed with ailments such as hematoma [4], bronchiectasis [5], bronchial carcinoma [6], aspergilloma [7,8], and hydatid cyst [9,10]. In some cases with cystic cavities, gossypiboma can be diagnosed immediately after the biopsy [11,12]. The patient often presents with asymptomatic complaints such as cough, pain, vomiting or fever in the early postoperative period. The average time to diagnosis is 6.9 yr [13], but can be as long as 52 yr following surgery [11]. Acute presentations typically involve a septic reaction with abscess or granuloma formation. Delayed presentation may also result in an adhesion or encapsulation [14].

The first case presented here was selected to emphasize the importance of considering IG in differential diagnosis of patients following diagnoses of lung abscess and empyema. The second case is presented because there were no complaints over a long period of time.

Case Reports

Case 1: A 47-year-old male patient was admitted to our clinic with fever, cough, dyspnea, right flank pain and yellow-green sputum that had continued for 14 days. He had a significant past medical history of coronary artery disease and mitral stenosis, as well as a history of tobacco use. A pacemaker (PM) had been implanted in the right side of his chest in 2002. The patient had been admitted to a cardiology clinic in February 2004 with a diagnosis of PM-lead infective endocarditis, and the PM was removed. A mitral valve commissurotomy via a right mini-thoracotomy had been performed in 2005.

On physical examination, his temperature was 38.5 °C, his pulse was 60 bpm, his respiratory rate was 16 breaths/min, his blood pressure was 135/80 mmHg, and his oxygen saturation was 97% on room air. His white blood cell (WBC) count at the time of admission was 15,600/µL. In his respiratory system examination, dullness was detected on percussion in the right middle zone. His auscultation and other system examinations proved normal. A chest X-ray showed a 6cm mass in the right middle zone (Figure 1). A computerized tomography (CT) scan of the thorax showed a 6x8 cm2 homogeneous soft tissue mass in the right hemithorax adjacent to the pleura, suggesting a diagnosis of empyema or lung abscess.

We obtained purulent material with therapeutic thoracentesis. The pH of the fluid was 7.29 and the bacterial culture result was negative. The patient underwent a CT-guided, fine-needle aspiration (CT-FNA) and a catheter was inserted into the pleural space by interventional radiology (Figure 2). Pus was aspirated from the catheter each day and irrigation was performed with normal saline. An indirect hemagglutination assay for a hydatid cyst proved negative. We began a carbapenem and aminoglycoside combination for a lung abscess and empyema diagnosis. The pus became liquid following the treatment and radiological regression was observed in the first week. Despite 2 wk of therapy, there was radiological progression and a debridement with video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery was carried out. The macroscopic appearance of the outer surface of the surgically removed material was irregular and grayish-brown. Once a surface section was removed, grayish-yellow and grayish-white areas and sutures were also observed. Microscopic observations included suture sections in fatty and fibrous connective tissue areas and a foreign body reaction consisting of foreign body giant cells, histiocytes and mononuclear cells (Figure 2). The diagnosis was a foreign body tissue reaction (IG). The characteristic appearance of the material suggested a sponge left behind during a past operation in the thorax. One month later a chest X-ray showed that the radio density had adequately regressed (Figure 3).

Case 2: A 67-year-old male patient receiving long-term, regular treatment due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) was admitted to our clinic with complaints of shortness of breath for 1 wk, phlegm, and sweating. He had a smoking history of 20 packs/yr. A coronary artery bypass graft had been performed in 2005 and a left anterior descending coronary artery stent implanted in 2007. Although a mass was detected in the left lung and surgery had been recommended, he had not consented to surgery.

Physical examination revealed a fever of 38.3 °C and diminished breathing sounds in the respiratory system examination. Other systemic examinations were normal. His WBC was 11,000/µL, sedimentation was 44/h, and C-reactive protein was 2.41 mg/dL. Pulmonary function test findings were forced expiratory volume 1 (FEV1) of 1.64 L 50% and FEV1/forced vital capacity (FVC) of 54%. Following these tests, the patient was started on clarithromycin and theophylline due to exacerbation of COPD. In the initial posteroanterior chest X-ray on admission, a 4-cm well-circumscribed mass was observed in the upper left zone . CT of the thorax showed a 4 x 5 cm2 mass in the left upper lobe adjacent to the pleura. Suture materials were observed inside the mass(Figure 4).A possible IG was diagnosed and surgery was recommended. However, the patient did not consent and a follow-up period was begun.

Figure 1: Posteroanterior chest X-ray (a) and CT of the thorax (b) showed a 6x8 cm2 homogeneous soft tissue mass in the right hemithorax adjacent to the pleura.

Figure 2:  Microscopic observations included suture sections in fatty and fibrous connective tissue areas and a foreign body reaction consisting of foreign body giant cells, histiocytes and mononuclear cells.

Figure 3: Chest X-ray 1 month after operation.

Figure 4: Posteroanterior chest X-ray (a) and CT of thorax (b) showed a 4 x 5 cm2 mass in the left upper lobe adjacent to the pleura. Suture materials were observed inside the mass.

Discussion

Gossypiboma is a foreign body reaction against the cotton matrix in a sponge and formation of a radiologically observable mass [1]. Based on the literature, the average time from the initial surgery to diagnosis is 6.9 yr (range, 3 wk to 52 yr) [11,13]. Time to diagnosis was 5-9 years in our cases. In our clinic, patients with IG commonly present with complaints varying from chronic cough to shortness of breath, chest pain, fever and weight loss. Some cases, such as Case 2 presented here, may be asymptomatic for several years. Radiologic findings can be misdiagnosed as hematoma [4], bronchiectasis [5], malignancy [6], aspergilloma [7,8], hydatid cyst [9,10], and empyema (Table 1).

Gossypibomas are most frequently observed in the abdomen (56%) and less frequently in the pelvis (18%) or thorax (11%) [15]. Gossypibomas are reported to occur more frequently after emergency abdominal surgeries and in obese patients [3]. Obesity increases the technical difficulty of an operation, and a large body cavity can result in the loss of a sponge or instrument. More involvement of staff experienced in emergency surgery may reduce this risk.

Although radiological findings may vary, well-circumscribed soft tissue density or calcification can be observed in chest X-rays. CT is the preferred tool for diagnosing IGs [16]. The CT aspect may differ by location and factors such as a high-attenuating mass, air bubbles, and granulomas. Spongiform patterns are characteristic of abdominal and intrathoracic gossypibomas [17]. These findings may be misdiagnosed as empyema or abscess. Air crescent signs [5,7] or cystic cavities [11,12]. Can be observed in some cases.

Ultrasound and magnetic resonance imaging can also be used for diagnosis [18,19]. Observing suture samples in the ultrasound or foreign body reactions in ultrasound-guided FNA material can be helpful for diagnosis. Treatment of IG is surgical excision [20]. In the USA, hospitalizations due to lost medical objects cost more than $60,000 per patient and related malpractice suits may cost $150,000–500,000 per case [21]. Thus, prevention should be emphasized.

Author

Operation History

Time to Diagnosis

Complaints

Tentative Diagnosis

Coskun M et al. [4]

Mitral valve operation

3 week

*

Hematoma

Suwatanapongched et al. [5]

Left under lobectomy

22 years

Chronic Cough

Bronchiectasis

Garcia et al. [6]

Pneumothorax operation

23 years

Sputum Dyspnea

Bronchial carcinoma

Park et al. [7]

Right middle lobectomy

31 years

Hemoptysis

Aspergilloma

Mir et al. [8]

Right upper lobectomy

9 years

Cough

Aspergilloma

Vara C et al. [9]

Left under lobectomy

37 years

Chest pain

Hydatid cyst

Patel et al. [10]

Mitral valve repair surgery

18 years

Hemoptysis

Hydatid cyst

Parra M et al. [11]

Lung Bilobectomy

52 years

Hemoptysis Chest Pain

Gossypiboma

Sologashwili et al. [12]

Tricuspid valve repair

11 years

Asymptomatic

Gossypiboma

Case-1

Mitral valve repair surgery

5 years

Sputum Right flank pain

Empyema

Case-2

CABG

9 years

Asymptomatic

Gossypiboma

*: no information

Table 1: Initial complaints, the operation history, time to diagnosis and tentative diagnosis of the cases diagnosed with intrathoracic gossypiboma in the literature.

Conclusion

Patients with a history of intrathoracic operation should be assessed for IG in differential diagnosis of new masses. To avoid morbidity, it is very important that sponges used during operations be counted carefully and that radiopaque sponges be used.

Consent

Written informed consent was obtained from the patient for publication of this case report and any accompanying images. A copy of the written consent is available for review by the Editor-in-Chief of this journal.

Conflict of Interests

The author declare that they have no conflict of interests.

References

  1. Irwin RS, Baumann MH, Bolser DC, Boulet LP, Braman SS, et al. (2006) Diagnosis and management of cough executive summary: ACCP evidence-based clinical practice guidelines. Chest 129(1 Suppl): 1S-23S.
  2. Chamberlain SA, Garrod R, Douiri A, Masefield S, Powell P, et al. (2015) The Impact of Chronic Cough: A Cross-Sectional European Survey. Lung 193(3): 401-408.
  3. Martin MJ, Harrison TW (2015) Causes of chronic productive cough: An approach to management. Respir Med 109(9): 1105-1113.
  4. McCrory DC, Coeytaux RR, Yancy WS, Schmit KM, Kemper AR, et al. (2013) Assessment and Management of Chronic Cough.
  5. Birring SS, Matos S, Patel RB, Prudon B, Evans DH, et al. (2006) Cough frequency, cough sensitivity and health status in patients with chronic cough. Respir Med 100(6): 1105-1109.
  6. Irwin RS, Curley FJ, French CL (1990) Chronic cough. The spectrum and frequency of causes, key components of the diagnostic evaluation, and outcome of specific therapy. Am Rev Respir Dis 141(3): 640-647.
  7. Farida F Berkhof, Boom LN, ten Hertog NE, Uil SM, Kerstjens HA, et al. (2012) The validity and precision of the leicester cough questionnaire in COPD patients with chronic cough. Health Qual Life Outcomes 10: 4.
  8. Kwon JW, Moon JY, Kim SH, Song WJ, Kim MH, et al. (2015) The reliability and validity of korean version of Leicester Cough Questionnaire. Allergy Asthma Immunol Res 7(3): 230-233.
  9. Huisman AN, Mei-Zei Wu, Steven M Uil, van den Berg JW (2007) Reliability and validity of a Dutch version of the Leicester Cough Questionnaire. Cough 3: 3.
  10. Birring SS, Prudon B, Carr AJ, Singh SJ, Morgan MDL, et al. (2003) Development of a symptom specific health status measure for patients with chronic cough: Leicester Cough Questionnaire (LCQ). Thorax 58(4): 339-343.
  11. Lohr KN, Aaronson NK, Alonso J, Burnam MA, Patrick DL, et al. (1996) Evaluating quality-of-life and health status instruments: development of scientific review criteria. Clin Ther 18(5): 979-992.
  12. French CT, Irwin RS, Fletcher KE, Adams TM  (2002) Evaluation of a cough-specific quality-of-life questionnaire. Chest 121(4): 1123-1131.
  13. Schmit KM, Coeytaux RR, Goode AP, McCrory DC, Yancy WS, et al. (2013) Evaluating cough assessment tools: a systematic review. Chest 144(6): 1819-1826.
  14. Boulet LP, Coeytaux RR, McCrory DC, French CT, Chang AB, et al. (2015) Tools for Assessing Outcomes in Studies of Chronic Cough. Chest 147(3): 189-195.
  15. Spinou A, Birring SS. (2014) An update on measurement and monitoring of cough: what are the important study endpoints? J Thorac Dis 6(Suppl 7): S728-S734.
  16. Field A (2009) Discovering Statistics Using SPSS. 1-816.
© 2014-2016 MedCrave Group, All rights reserved. No part of this content may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means as per the standard guidelines of fair use.
Creative Commons License Open Access by MedCrave Group is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://medcraveonline.com
Best viewed in Mozilla Firefox | Google Chrome | Above IE 7.0 version | Opera |Privacy Policy