FOREIGN-body aspiration with subsequent airway obstruction typically occurs in children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years; this may be heralded by sudden respiratory decompensation and often is manifested by asymmetric abnormalities on both physical and roentgenographic examination. A history consistent with exposure to either food or small parts of toys is present in approximately 90% of proven cases.1 Bronchoscopic removal is the recommended treatment as it is safe and effective.2 Because we recently treated a child whose presentation and course following aspiration of a foreign body were so unusual, we report this instructive case to discuss potential pitfalls in diagnosis and management.
Report of a Case
A 3-month-old male infant had a medical history of wheezing that was treated with antihistamines and bronchodilators. On the morning of admission he was febrile, irritable, and breathing with slightly more difficulty than usual, according to his mother. By noon,
Anas NG, Perkin RM. Aspiration of a Balloon by a 3-Month-Old Infant. JAMA. 1983;250(3):385–386. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340030045027
Browse and subscribe to JAMA Network podcasts!
Customize your JAMA Network experience by selecting one or more topics from the list below.
Create a personal account or sign in to: