At the age of 11 years, a female patient had sustained a fracture of the right humerus. She underwent open reduction and internal fixation with two straight Kirschner wires (K-wires). Twenty years later, at the age of 31 years, she underwent a chest roentgenogram for suspected respiratory symptoms when it was discovered that one of the K-wires (arrow in Fig. 1) had migrated to the mediastinum. Contrast enhanced computed tomography scans (Figure 2, Figure 3) revealed that the K-wire (green arrow) had migrated to the posterior mediastinum across the midline in the pre vertebral space posterior to the oesophagus and arch of aorta (red arrow). Because the sharp edge had already crossed the midline and the vital structures and the probability of further left lateral movement was high, it was decided to keep the patient under yearly follow-up because the surgical removal from the left hemithorax was anticipated to be technically easier and associated with less morbidity than removing it from its current location in the posterior mediastinum.
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- Migration of pins used in operation on the shoulder.J Bone Joint Surg. 1990; 72-A: 1262-1267
Published online: November 06, 2013
Accepted: September 29, 2013
Received: September 27, 2013
© 2013 Australian and New Zealand Society of Cardiac and Thoracic Surgeons (ANZSCTS) and the Cardiac Society of Australia and New Zealand (CSANZ). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.