Doctors surprised by unexpected cause of man’s red face

Josh Dutton
·News Reporter
·2-min read

Doctors have found an unusual cause behind why a man’s face was turning red.

The man, 75, from San Diego in California, went to dermatologists to find out why he was turning red and was worried it was because of an antidepressant medication he had just started taking, according to his case in the New England Journal of Medicine.

He added he was also suffering from some dizziness and had redness and swelling on his arms too. Doctors noted his lips were also blue and jugular veins bloated.

The man had a history of heart problems and was using a pacemaker.

A man's face is pictured, swollen and red. A CT scan is also pictured of his chest which shows his pacemaker wiring caught in blood clots.
Doctors discovered this man's facial swelling was actually being caused by blood clots. Source: New England Journal of Medicine

“Two years before the current presentation, the pacemaker leads had been replaced after a lead had fractured,” researchers wrote.

Pacemaker wiring caught up in blood clots

A CT scan of his chest was undertaken with blockage of his superior vena cava vein found.

Doctors realised the wiring of the man’s pacemaker had been caught in a blood clot in the vein.

They also found clots in other blood vessels and veins including in the man’s neck.

The man was hospitalised and given medication.

“A month later, he underwent pacemaker extraction with placement of a lead-less system,” researchers wrote.

“At follow-up three days after the procedure, his symptoms had resolved.”

Pregnant woman's tumour removed

A 27-year-old pregnant woman, from Toronto, Canada, was hospitalised 32 weeks into her pregnancy and doctors discovered she had a 7cm malignant tumour in her adrenal gland.

Doctors removed one of the mum’s adrenal glands a month after she gave birth, which confirmed the presence of the cancerous growth.

They also determined the cancer had not spread.

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