Man coughs up startling blood clot shaped like a lung passage

The man's bronchial tree

The unnamed man had been admitted to an intensive care unit for chronic heart failure.

The "rare" intact blood clot was coughed up by a 36-year-old man, who had been hospitalised for heart failure.

The anti-coagulants the man was taking forced blood out of his pulmonary system and into his right lung.

Doctors are bewildered as to how an extraordinarily shaped blood clot came out of a patient.

Doctors were treating him with oxygen tanks when he had the coughing fit.

"The right bronchial tree consists of three segmental branches in the upper lobe, two segmental branches in the middle lobe, and five segmental branches in the lower lobe", the journal's authors wrote, "The patient's trachea was subsequently intubated, and flexible bronchoscopy revealed a small amount of blood in the basilar branches of the right lower lobe".

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

"We were astonished", Wieselthaler said.

While doctors still aren't 100 per cent sure how the clot stayed completely intact on its way up the man's throat, Dr Wieselthaler suspected it was because the man had more fibrinogen in his blood.

A 40-year-old woman with asthma presented with a 2-day history of pleuritic pain of acute onset in the right side of the chest. And in the midst of one coughing fit he hawked up a bronchial tree - a series of tubes that distribute air to the lungs.

A week later, the man died from complications of heart failure. "It's a curiosity you can't imagine-I mean, this is very, very, very rare".

When Wieselthaler and his team delicately spread out the clot, they discovered "that the architecture of the airways had been retained so perfectly that they were able to identify it as the right bronchial tree based exclusively on the number of branches and their alignment".

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