Spontaneous pneumomediastinum (SPM) is a rare complication of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The published literature consists mainly of case reports and small case series. There are still many questions regarding the pathogenesis, the prognostic significance and the implications on patient management. In our hospital three COVID-19 patients developed SPM: one on admission at the emergency department and the other two during hospitalization. In this study we describe their clinical course and computed tomography (CT) findings. All of them had severe disease according to the total severity score on admission CT. The management of pneumomediastinum was conservative and follow-up CT showed resolution in all patients. As the correlation between extension of parenchymal lung lesions and development of pneumomediastinum is still under investigation, we highlight the importance of reporting the severity score on chest CT in order to obtain more comparable results between different studies. Furthermore, in this tragic circumstance we also had the opportunity to familiarize ourselves with the otherwise uncommon occurrence of air along the bronchovascular sheaths (Macklin effect) and evaluate the ability of CT to detect it.
scite is a Brooklyn-based startup that helps researchers better discover and understand research articles through Smart Citations–citations that display the context of the citation and describe whether the article provides supporting or contrasting evidence. scite is used by students researchers from around the world and is funded in part by the National Science Foundation and the National Institute on Drug Abuse of the National Institutes of Health.