THE PATHOLOGICAL changes which take place in the mucous membrane of the air passages in the presence of an exogenous foreign body are well known, thanks to Chevalier Jackson. These changes start early when the foreign body consists of vegetable matter, in contrast to the slower effects produced by most metallic foreign bodies. Swelling of the mucous membrane occurs first, and for a short time this does not interfere with the free interchange of air in both directions. With vegetal foreign bodies a check-valve mechanism forms early, which results in obstructive emphysema as a rule. Later, the swelling of the mucous membrane closes the by-passage, the residual air in the tributary area is absorbed, and obstructive atelectasis follows. Within a few weeks pus collects, and a condition of "drowned lung" results. If this state continues, an abscess of the lung may form.
The above facts draw attention to the necessity
FEINMESSER M. FOREIGN BODIES OF VEGETAL ORIGIN IN THE AIR PASSAGES: The Effect of Antibiotics on the Pathological and Clinical Picture. AMA Arch Otolaryngol. 1955;61(2):223–226. doi:10.1001/archotol.1955.00720020237012
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