Incorrect positioning of nasogastric feeding tubes and the development of pneumothorax.
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The authors describe 12 patients in whom feeding tubes were inadvertently placed in the bronchial tree a total of 14 times. All but four of the misplacements were complicated by pneumothorax. No deaths were directly attributable to the misplacements, although one cardiac arrest occurred as a late complication of intrapleural feeding. Careful, controlled insertion of feeding tubes and radiographic confirmation of their placement are essential to reduce morbidity and mortality.
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