Rare case of anterior cervical discectomy and fusion complication in a patient with Zenker's diverticulum.

Research paper by Mauro M Dobran, Maurizio M Gladi, Fabrizio F Mancini, Davide D Nasi

Indexed on: 21 Dec '18Published on: 21 Dec '18Published in: BMJ case reports


We present a case of Zenker's diverticulum in a 45-year-old woman, occurred as complication after anterior cervical discectomy and fusion for a cervical spine injury. The oesophageal complication occurred 12 months after vertebral cervical surgery and presenting symptoms were fever, dysphagia and neck pain with evidence of retropharyngeal infection. We performed a posterior cervical stabilisation C3-D1 by screws and rods and a second anterior left cervical approach with anterior plate removing and oesophageal wall break repairing with a sternohyoid muscle patch. Despite pharyngo-oesophageal diverticulum may be a complication of anterior cervical surgery (traction diverticulum), in case of an already present true Zenker's diverticulum, delayed complication may occur without cervical hardware pull-out. © BMJ Publishing Group Limited 2018. No commercial re-use. See rights and permissions. Published by BMJ.