Radiation Medicine

, Volume 26, Issue 6, pp 343–347 | Cite as

Infectious mediastinitis after cardiovascular surgery: role of computed tomography

  • Tsuneo Yamashiro
  • Hisashi Kamiya
  • Sadayuki Murayama
  • Shinobu Unten
  • Tadashi Nakayama
  • Masaki Gibo
  • Yukio Kuniyoshi
Original Article

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of computed tomography (CT) findings in the diagnosis of mediastinitis after cardiovascular surgery with median sternotomy.

Material and methods

A total of 122 patients were divided into two groups: the early group (≤21 days after surgery) and the late group (>21 days after surgery). Among them, six patients were ultimately diagnosed with infectious mediastinitis. CT findings in each patient were evaluated. Mediastinal fluid collections or free gas bubbles were regarded as the primary findings of mediastinitis.

Results

In the early group, sensitivity and specificity of the primary CT findings were 100% and 39%, respectively. In the late group, the sensitivity was 100% and the specificity 85%. Mediastinal fluid collections were observed in all six patients with mediastinitis.

Conclusion

Mediastinal fluid collections or free gas bubbles are not specific during the early postoperative period. However, after 2 21 days, these observations could be indicative of mediastinitis.

Key words

Mediastinitis Median sternotomy Cardiovascular surgery Computed tomography 

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Copyright information

© Japan Radiological Society 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tsuneo Yamashiro
    • 1
  • Hisashi Kamiya
    • 1
  • Sadayuki Murayama
    • 1
  • Shinobu Unten
    • 1
  • Tadashi Nakayama
    • 1
  • Masaki Gibo
    • 1
  • Yukio Kuniyoshi
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Radiology, Graduate School of Medical ScienceUniversity of the RyukyusOkinawaJapan
  2. 2.Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Department of Bioregulatory Medicine, Faculty of MedicineUniversity of the RyukyusOkinawaJapan

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