The patient was in noticeable respiratory distress and had oxygen saturation of 94% on room air. Bilateral jugular venous distention with severe right supraclavicular lymphadenopathy and diffuse bilateral wheezing was present. Although muffled heart sounds and hypotension are part of Beck’s Triad, these were not present in this case. Electrocardiogram obtained on arrival showed a sinus tachycardia with low-voltage QRS complexes and electrical alternans. Low voltage QRS can be seen on the ECG provided and is demonstrated by the low amplitude of the QRS complexes seen on all the leads. Electrical alternans may have an alternating axis or amplitudes of the QRS complex. Alternating axis is best visualized in V4-V6 on this ECG while alternating amplitudes are seen throughout the rest of the ECG. Computed tomography angiogram (CTA) of the chest revealed a large pericardial effusion with bilateral pulmonary emboli and a right upper lobe mass. A bedside transthoracic echocardiogram (TTE) was then performed and confirmed the large effusion, but also showed right ventricular collapse during diastole, indicative of cardiac tamponade.
A consultative scrotal ultrasound was performed, which was read as showing a small right hydrocele, small bilateral scrotal pearls, and normal-appearing testes. Although present, there was no mention of subcutaneous air suggestive of NF, seen in figure 1 as punctate hyperechoic foci (arrowhead) with ring-down artifact known as dirty shadowing (arrow). Also, subcutaneous thickening (asterisk) and free fluid (arrow) were seen as shown in figure 2, although their clinical relevance was not recognized in the radiologist's final report. Figure 3 shows an abdominal and pelvic CT that re-demonstrates subcutaneous air in the scrotum and lower abdomen (arrow) as well as fascial thickening of the perineum and free intra-abdominal air. After these images, the patient was transferred to our hospital for further management. Almost immediately after the patient's arrival, POCUS was employed. As seen in figures 4, we were able to identify in just a few minutes extensive subcutaneous air accompanied by dirty shadowing, as well as re-demonstration of subcutaneous thickening, fluid collections, and a right hydrocele. Even without the outside hospital's CT, the sonographic findings were highly suggestive for the diagnosis of NF of the perineum, also known as Fournier’s gangrene.
A Case Report on Detecting Porcelain Gallbladder form Wall-Echo-Shadow Sign on Point-of-Care UltrasoundDOI: https://doi.org/10.21980/J8164G
Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) was performed by the emergency physician. Gallbladder ultrasound (US) should be performed using a curvilinear probe. If the patient’s body habitus does not allow for the use of a curvilinear probe, a phased array probe may be used. To find the gallbladder with ultrasonography, two approaches are commonly used. Many physicians prefer the “subcostal sweep” in which the probe is placed on the xiphoid process in a sagittal plane and swept along the inferior costal margin until the gallbladder is visualized. If this does not adequately locate the gallbladder, the “X minus 7” approach may be used. In this approach, the probe is placed on the xiphoid (X) process in a transverse view and moved 7 centimeters (minus 7) to the patient’s right. This technique is useful for patients with a larger body habitus. If the gallbladder is still not visualized, placing the patient in left lateral decubitus position or asking them to take a deep breath and hold may help the ultrasonographer locate the gallbladder. The US revealed mild hepatic biliary duct dilation with cholelithiasis and sludge, but no additional evidence to suggest cholecystitis. The US image showed a dilated common bile duct at 0.94 cm and calcifications. Visualization of the gallbladder wall is essential in differentiating between a positive wall-echo-shadow (WES) sign and a porcelain gallbladder. While a hypoechoic gallbladder wall is indicative of a WES sign, a hyperechoic wall layer will indicate a calcified gallbladder wall, suggesting a porcelain gallbladder. In image 1, the hyperechoic gallbladder wall can be visualized (white arrow), suggesting the presence of porcelain gallbladder and distinguishing it from a positive WES sign.
On examination, the patient was alert and oriented but in mild distress. Suprapubic fullness was noted upon abdominal palpation. Point of care ultrasound of the bladder showed two enlarged “bladders” with a central communication. Bedside total bladder volume was measured to be 1288 cm3 (the top “bladder” was measured to be 1011 cm3, while the bottom “diverticulum” was measured to be 277 cm3) by ultrasound. The POCUS stills of the patient’s bladder demonstrated the bladder (red arrow) and bladder diverticulum (yellow arrow) with a central communication (blue arrow) in the transverse and sagittal views.
Ascending Thoracic Aortic Dissection: A Case Report of Rapid Detection Via Emergency Echocardiography with Suprasternal Notch ViewsDOI: https://doi.org/10.21980/J8WW6W
Video of parasternal long-axis bedside transthoracic echocardiogram: The initial images showed grossly normal left ventricular function, and no pericardial effusion or evidence of cardiac tamponade. However, the proximal aorta beyond the aortic valve was poorly-visualized in this window.
Bedside renal ultrasound demonstrated a right renal cyst with echogenic debris consistent with a hemorrhagic cyst (red arrow). In addition, a computed tomography (CT) scan of the abdomen and pelvis revealed a 4mm non-obstructing right renal stone and bilateral renal cysts. The CT also confirmed the ultrasound finding of a right renal cyst with mild perinephric stranding possibly consistent with a hemorrhagic cyst.
A bedside ultrasound of the aorta was performed. The proximal, middle, and distal aorta appeared normal in caliber, as demonstrated by the images; however there seemed to be some enlargement at the bifurcation. The bifurcation into the iliac arteries, as highlighted by the yellow arrow, demonstrates a slightly enlarged iliac artery on the left. The aorta was followed below the bifurcation as it divided into the iliac arteries, as shown in the video clip. The ultrasound demonstrated a left iliac artery aneurysm measuring 5.99 cm, as highlighted by the orange circle. There were aneurysms to the bilateral common and internal iliac arteries.
Bedside ultrasound revealed an abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) with concern for dissection vs thrombus/hematoma due to an area of echogenicity within the lumen of the vessel, since normal blood vessels (including the aorta) have lumens that are uniformly anechoic. An intimal flap concerning for dissection appears as a hyperechoic stripe within the lumen of the vessel on ultrasound, often with a hypoechoic and/or anechoic area appreciated underneath the flap, indicating a separate area of blood flow. If this visualized area is of significant size, color doppler can be used to confirm blood flow on both sides of the flap. Given his bedside ultrasound findings, the patient underwent emergent computed tomography scan and was found to have an enlarged infrarenal abdominal aortic aneurysm, with acute intramural hematoma, extending into bilateral common iliac arteries.
Point-of-care cardiac echocardiogram demonstrated a dilated ascending aorta (illustrated in red) measuring approximately 4 cm in the parasternal long axis (PLAX). A dilated aortic arch (illustrated in green) also measuring approximately 4 cm was appreciated using the suprasternal notch view (SSNV). A follow-up computed tomography angiogram (CTA) was performed, validating bedside ultrasound measurements.
The ultrasound video clip shows a longitudinal view of the AT during a dynamic exam. While the patient’s foot is gently passively dorsi/plantar flexed, the video demonstrates first a normal Achilles tendon (from the unaffected extremity) without disruption (highlighted by a yellow bracket on screen left). Then it shows an abnormal tendon (the patient’s affected side) with disruption of the typical linear tendon fibers (red arrow identifies area of rupture). Dynamic testing shows the movement of the distal stump of the AT is evident adjacent to hypoechoic fluid that is reactive edema or blood from the acute rupture.