Multiple Magnet Ingestion as a Source of Severe Gastrointestinal Complications Requiring Surgical Intervention | Pediatrics | JAMA Pediatrics | JAMA Network
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Article
February 2008

Multiple Magnet Ingestion as a Source of Severe Gastrointestinal Complications Requiring Surgical Intervention

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: Division of Pediatric Surgery, Lucile Packard Children's Hospital, Stanford University, Stanford, California.

Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2008;162(2):123-125. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2007.35
Abstract

Objective  To raise awareness of the dangers associated with magnet ingestion in children.

Design  Case report and review of the literature.

Setting  Tertiary care children's hospital.

Patient  Four-year-old boy with minimal physical findings but with a clinical history and imaging suggesting complications from multiple magnet ingestion.

Intervention  Laparoscopic removal of magnets and repair of magnet-induced enterotomies.

Outcome Measure  Clinical course.

Results  Full recovery after surgical intervention.

Conclusions  Ingestion of multiple magnets can cause minimal initial physical examination findings but result in significant complications, including bowel perforation, volvulus, ischemia, and death. Early surgical intervention can prevent significant morbidity and mortality. Clinical vigilance should be exercised in these cases and early surgical consultation with an aggressive surgical approach is recommended. Parents should be warned against the dangers of children's toys that contain these powerful magnets.

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