July - September 2017:
Volume 30, Issue 3

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Pneumon 2017, 30(3):188-191
A hereditary methemoglobinemia case: Estimation of tissue oxygenation
Authors Information
1: Pulmonology Department,
2: Haematology Department,
3: Intensive Care Unit, 424 General Military Hospital, Thessaloniki, Greece.


We present the case of an adult patient presenting with clinical features suggestive of asthmatic bronchitis due to respiratory tract infection and a low pulse oximetry reading, who was finally diagnosed suffering from hereditary methemoglobinemia. Presence of a wide discrepancy in haemoglobin oxygen saturation, as assessed by pulse oximetry (SpO2) and arterial blood gas analysis (SaO2), along with normal arterial blood partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) are findings highly suggestive of elevated methemoglobin concentration. Measurements of SpO2 and SaO2 are, due to technical reasons, unreliable in cases of, either hereditary or due to exposure to an oxidizing agent, Methemoglobinemia and alternative methods estimating tissue oxygenation have to be used.