Acute Saddle Pulmonary Embolism: A Rare Complication of Mycoplasma Pneumonia


West Florida


Oak Hill Hospital

Document Type

Case Report

Publication Date



pneumonia, pulmonary embolism, mycoplasma pneumonia, mycoplasma pneumoniae, mycoplasma


Internal Medicine | Medicine and Health Sciences | Pulmonology | Respiratory Tract Diseases



Mycoplasma pneumonia affects 1% of the population in the United States. The majority of patients infected with Mycoplasma experience upper respiratory tract infection symptoms, and about 10% of patients infected with Mycoplasma develop pneumonia. A rare complication is a pulmonary embolism (PE), which may be life-threatening if not diagnosed early and treated promptly. Our case explores the presentation of Mycoplasma pneumonia complicated by acute saddle PE, an association only reported in the form of case reports globally.

Case presentation

A 75-year-old previously healthy female presented to the emergency department with shortness of breath. The patient was found to be in acute hypoxic respiratory failure secondary to community acquired pneumonia and antibiotics were started. During hospitalization, her respiratory failure worsened and had to be escalated to a non-rebreather mask. Repeat chest X-ray showed a possible developing infiltrate on the left side. Antibiotic coverage was escalated and broadened. Serology was positive for mycoplasma pneumoniae. Telemetry monitoring showed non-sustained episodes of Atrial Fibrillation and Electrocardiogram showed the presence of new-onset SIQIIITIII. Computer Tomography Angiography of the chest showed acute saddle PE. The patient was subsequently upgraded to the ICU, where she was intubated and started on catheter-directed thrombolysis to decrease clot burden.


To our knowledge, this is the first case of acute saddle PE in a live patient with mycoplasma pneumonia. This entity is important in order to ensure early diagnosis of PE in association with mycoplasma pneumonia and the initiation of early treatment to improve patient outcomes.

Publisher or Conference

Respiratory Medicine Case Reports