Intranodal lymphangiography as a possible therapeutic option for patients with isolated thoracic duct injury from penetrating chest trauma

Sung Wook Chang, Bong Man Kim, Kyoung Min Ryu, Jae-Wook Ryu


A 49-year-old female presented to the emergency department after multiple stab injuries. Bilateral thoracostomy was performed due to a right hemopneumothorax and a left pneumothorax without tracheoesophageal and vascular injury. On admission day 4, a significant amount of milky fluid was collected in the drain after initiation of regular diet. Under suspicion of chylothorax, conservative management was initiated, but failed. Surgery was considered, but ruled out due to the patient’s refusal. As an alternative, lymphangiography was performed, which resulted in decreased thoracic drainage and eventual removal of the chest tube. This is an unusual case of an isolated thoracic duct injury that was successful treated by closure of the duct after intranodal lymphangiography.