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Oesophageal foreign body: an unusual presentation

  • M Oyewole (a1), O Ajayi (a2) and A Hilger (a2)

Abstract

Objective:

This paper describes and discusses the case of an oesophageal foreign body, in which the patient presented with primarily respiratory clinical signs.

Case report:

A 17-month-old child, who had ingested a watch battery, presented to emergency services on multiple occasions with upper respiratory tract symptoms. Subsequent radiographs showed the battery in the oesophagus impinging on the trachea. The battery was removed successfully under a general anaesthetic.

Conclusion:

Large oesophageal foreign bodies can impinge on the trachea causing upper respiratory tract signs. In such cases, anteroposterior and lateral chest films are imperative to make a correct diagnosis.

Copyright

Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Dr M Oyewole, Department of Surgery, Hillingdon Hospital, Pield Heath Rd, Uxbridge UB8 3NN, UK Fax: 0208 534 7951 E-mail: molola.oyewole@doctors.org.uk

References

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1Cheng, W, Tam, PK. Foreign-body ingestion in children: experience with 1,263 cases. J Pediatr Surg 1999;34:1472–6
2Singh, BH, Kantu, M, Har-El, G, Lucente, FE. Complications associated with 327 foreign bodies of the pharynx, larynx and esophagus. Ann Otol Rhinol Laryngol 1997;106:301–4
3Nandi, P, Ong, GB. Foreign body in the oesophagus: review of 2394 cases. Br J Surg 1978;65:59
4Leong, HK, Chan, R. Foreign bodies in the upper digestive tract. Singapore Med J 1987;28:162–5

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