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Accidental ingestion of foreign bodies

Fish bone penetrated into the lodge right tonsil

Accidental ingestion of foreign objects is a frequent cause of evaluation at the emergency room. Foreign bodies can be foodborne (fish bones or bone) or toys (typical of children) or other materials (especially in psychiatric patients) and can penetrate mucous membranes aereodigestive tract and then have an evaluation by the Otolaryngologist.

Often the foreign body creates only small superficial lesions of the mucosa and manages to proceed into the food channel without causing other problems. The small injury caused by the foreign body can also be very annoying and well localized by the patient giving the feeling that the foreign body is still in the throat.
And’ it is important to carry out a specialist ENT assessment to check for the presence of the foreign body and possibly to remove it.
Foreign bodies can locate themselves at the side or back wall level of the oropharyzing and be visible through the mouth (oropharygroscopy) or they can be located in glossoepiglotic valleys or hypopharyntion/laryringe and to locate them you may need to perform an indirect laryngoscopy with a mirror or a fiberoptic.

The fishbone extracted from the patient in the previous image, about 2 cm of which only a few mm were visible

Extraction can be done with a simple ton for awake patient or, in more complex cases it may be necessary to sedate or sleep the patient with general anesthesia in the operating room.