What is retropharyngeal fluid?

Fluid collections in the retropharyngeal space (RPS) result from a wide spectrum of diseases, including retropharyngeal abscess, cervical osteomyelitis, and calcific tendinitis of the longus colli muscle.

How is retropharyngeal abscess diagnosis?

A doctor usually can diagnose a retropharyngeal abscess based on symptoms and by examining a child’s mouth, throat, and neck. If a retropharyngeal abscess seems likely, the child should see an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist. Blood tests, X-rays, or a CT scan can help doctors make the diagnosis.

When should you suspect a retropharyngeal abscess?

A doctor suspects a retropharyngeal abscess in children who have a severe, unexplained sore throat, a stiff neck, and noisy breathing. X-rays and computed tomography (CT) scans of the neck can confirm the diagnosis.

What causes retropharyngeal edema?

Retropharyngeal edema is the presence of nonpurulent fluid in the retropharyngeal space. The accumulation of fluid is thought to be due to altered lymphatic drainage or excess lymph production. There are multiple causes of retropharyngeal edema, including radiotherapy, internal jugular vein (IJV) thrombosis (Figs.

What is the retropharyngeal space?

The retropharyngeal space (RPS) is an anatomical region that spans from the base of the skull to the mediastinum. Its location is anterior to the prevertebral muscles and posterior to the pharynx and esophagus.

What is the difference between retropharyngeal and parapharyngeal abscess?

Two main types of deep abscesses within the neck are parapharygeal abscess which is infection and accumulation of purulent discharge within the parapharyngeal space and retropharyngeal abscess which is infection and accumulation of purulent discharge within the retropharyngeal space.

What bacteria causes retropharyngeal abscesses?

Retropharyngeal abscesses are often polymicrobial infections. Bacteria that commonly contribute to these infections include Group A Streptococcus pyogenes, Staphylococcus aureus, Fusobacterium, Haemophilus species, and other respiratory anaerobic organisms.

Which is the most serious complication of acute retropharyngeal abscess?

Without proper treatment, retropharyngeal abscesses can lead to upper airway obstruction and asphyxiation.

Is retropharyngeal abscess an emergency?

Retropharyngeal abscess (RPA) is an ENT emergency due to the possibility of life-threatening airway complications. Patients with RPA typically have localized symptoms of dysphagia, voice changes, odynophagia, trismus, and neck/jaw pain. Generalized symptoms of fever, chills, and loss of appetite may be present as well.

Is retropharyngeal life threatening?

Retropharyngeal abscess is a collection of pus in the tissues in the back of the throat. It can be a life-threatening medical condition.

What lymph nodes drain into retropharyngeal space?

Retropharyngeal lymph nodes
Lymphatics of pharynx. (Retropharyngeal lymph nodes labeled at center top.)
System Lymphatic system
Drains to superior deep cervical lymph nodes

How can you tell the difference between Peritonsillar abscess and retropharyngeal abscess?

A peritonsillar abscess is a localized infection (pus) involving the tonsils. Retropharyngeal ab- scesses occur in the back of the throat. Although these two infections have some differing symp- toms, both usually cause fever, sore throat, and dif- ficulty eating.

Do radiologists diagnose fluid in the retropharyngeal space?

Since physicians in various clinical departments are involved in the care of a patient with a fluid collection in the RPS, radiologists are required to differentiate the etiology and to recommend referral to the appropriate department. None. Multiplanar CT and MRI of collections in the retropharyngeal space: is it an abscess?

What does the retropharyngeal space look like on a CT scan?

CT/MRI. The retropharyngeal space appears as a small, roughly rectangular space on axial imaging, wider in the mediolateral dimension and thinner in the anteroposterior dimension. As fatty areolar tissue is the main component of the retropharyngeal space, it has a density consistent with fat on CT and a signal consistent with fat on MRI.

Does retropharyngeal hematoma show up on CT?

Retropharyngeal hematoma—importance of careful observation on CT and MRI Retropharyngeal hematoma occurs in trauma, rupture of the carotid artery, foreign body ingestion, hemorrhagic complication with anticoagulation, and cerebral angiography [4].

What is retropharyngeal fluid collection (RPS)?

Fluid collection in the retropharyngeal space (RPS) is a manifestation of various diseases, which are treated by physicians in different clinical departments.