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March 16, 1912

Thermometer Swallowed Without Harm

JAMA. 1912;LVIII(11):804. doi:10.1001/jama.1912.04260030202033

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To the Editor:  —Carelessness of physicians in general practice in making reports of unusual occurrences is to blame for the loss of much valuable information. But each one thinks his case is probably only one among many others and fails to report it. So of the fever thermometer swallowing act, reported in the January and February numbers of The Journal; possibly there are many such cases. In August, 1891, a nurse carelessly placed a thermometer in the mouth of one of my patients delirious from typhoid fever. Patient immediately chewed it up and swallowed it. No serious results followed. Patient is living to-day and has not paid his bill, not even for the thermometer. At the time, I mentioned the case to Dr. A. J. Banker of this city and he informed me that one of his patients had swallowed a thermometer and that when passed per rectum it registered

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