Emergency admissions due to swallowed foreign bodies in adults

Bülent Erbil*, Mehmet Ali Karaca, Mehmet Ali Aslaner, Zaur Ibrahimov, Mehmet Mahir Kunt, Erhan Akpinar, Mehmet Mahir Özmen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)


Aim: To study a retrospective analysis of patients who presented to the emergency departments (ED) with complaints related to foreign body ingestions. Methods: Patients older than 16 years of age who presented to the ED between January 1st and December 31st of 2010 with complaints related to swallowed foreign bodies were identified from electronic health records and patient charts. Results: A total of 100 patients presented with a complaint of foreign body ingestion during the study period. Overall, an X-ray was performed on 75 patients, and a fiberoptic evaluation was performed on 45 patients. A foreign body was detected in 46 (46%) patients. The diagnostic yield of the X-ray was 27 (36%) out of 75 patients, while the diagnostic yield of the fiberoptic evaluations was 21 (47%) out of 45 patients. The detected foreign bodies were mostly located in the esophagus (17 out of 46 foreign bodies detected). When the types of ingested foreign bodies were evaluated, 52 (52%) patients reported ingesting food, and 19 (19%) patients reported swallowing pins. An X-ray was performed on 33 patients with accidental food ingestions but yielded a positive result in only two cases. In 12 out of 21 patients with accidental food ingestion who underwent fiberoptic evaluation, the foreign material was detected and removed. Conclusion: Plain radiography is helpful in the localization of radiopaque swollen foreign bodies, while fiberoptic methods are useful as both diagnostic and therapeutic tools, regardless of radiopacity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6447-6452
Number of pages6
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number38
Publication statusPublished - 14 Oct 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Emergency
  • Endoscopy
  • Foreign body
  • Gastrointestinal tract
  • Ingestion


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