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Impacted dentures in the oesophagus

  • S N Bandyopadhyay (a1), S Das (a1), S K Das (a1) and A Mandal (a2)



This study presents the incidence of denture impaction in the oesophagus, and discusses the difficulties of managing such cases.


A total of 262 patients with a history of foreign body ingestion (between 1999 and 2010) were reviewed; 46 of these patients had dentures impacted in the oesophagus.


The cervical section of the oesophagus was the commonest site of impaction. Dysphagia and tracheal tenderness were the most consistent features when dentures became impacted in the upper oesophagus. In most cases, rigid oesophagoscopy enabled successful removal of the impacted denture. Locating an impacted denture hidden within the oesophageal mucosal folds sometimes proved difficult.


In cases of impacted dentures in the oesophagus, a positive history helps in the diagnosis, but a high degree of clinical suspicion aids early detection. Conventional radiographs are important but may not always be of assistance. Early intervention reduces complications. Dentures that are poorly maintained and old are more likely to be swallowed accidentally. The inclusion of radiopaque filler within dentures would assist localisation following accidental swallowing.


Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Dr S N Bandyopadhyay, Flat no. 3R-3/5, Ananya Housing Estate, 25C, R. M. Dutta Garden Lane, Kolkata 700 010, West Bengal, India E-mail:


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