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Incredible Blood Clot Coughed Up Intact Stumps Doctors

08 December 2018

In a medically-worded tweet, the NEJM explained what happened.

The unidentified 36-year-old man found himself in the intensive care unit at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center late last month for chronic heart failure.

A California man with a history of heart problems had a coughing fit so extreme, doctors say, he coughed up a red object that looked like a plant; it was a blood clot perfectly shaped like part of his lung.

In other words, the man was rushed to hospital with chronic heart failure and to help his heart, doctors at the University of California - where the man was admitted - connected him to a machine created to maximise blood flow around the body.

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He had been hooked up to a ventricular assist device - used to help circulate blood around the body - and administered anti-coagulation therapy (blood thinners).

"You have high turbulence inside the pumps, and that can cause clots to form inside", Wieselthalers told The Atlantic.

It is also possible to cough up parts of the lung - as proven by this case, in which the man coughed up the right bronchial tree, which consists of three segmental branches in the upper lobe (as shown by the blue arrows above), two segmental branches in the middle lobe (as shown by the white arrows) and five segmental branches in the lower lobe (as shown by the black arrows).

"We were astonished", Dr Wieselthaler said.

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Bronchial tree clots (called casts) are actually relativelycommon but only in extremely rare cases do they emerge in such pristine condition.

It came from a 36-year-old man with end-stage heart failure who spat out the medical anomaly in one piece during a coughing fit in hospital. "It's a curiosity you can't imagine-I mean, this is very, very, very rare".

While being treated in hospital, he started coughing up blood and mucus, which apparently increased the strain on his lungs, and doctors had started treating him with oxygen tanks.

In 2005, a heavily pregnant woman coughed up a similar but smaller bronchial tree clot.

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Incredible Blood Clot Coughed Up Intact Stumps Doctors