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June 1968

Blind Esophageal Coin Removal Using a Foley Catheter

Author Affiliations

Cheyenne, Wyo
From the Department of Surgery, USAF Hospital, Francis E. Warren AFB, Cheyenne, Wyo. Doctor Brown is now with the Department of Orthopedic Surgery, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Pittsburgh.

Arch Surg. 1968;96(6):931-932. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1968.01330240077017

THE INGESTION of foreign bodies by children is not an uncommon presenting complaint. Diagnosis is usually simple, but removal presents problems. "Esophagoscopy is a dangerous procedure and not to be undertaken lightly,"1 yet blind methods of removing foreign bodies are extremely dangerous and widely decried.2

We have recently had success with an independently conceived, simple method confirming a similar approach by Bigler.3

Report of a Case  A 2-year-old child was brought to the F. E. Warren Air Force Base emergency room shortly after having swallowed a penny. The child was in no distress and the presence of the coin was confirmed by posteroanterior and lateral roentgenograms (Fig 1 and 2), showing the coin at the level of the first and second thoracic vertebrae.The child had eaten approximately one hour before ingesting the coin. A postingestion bread feeding failed to move the coin into the stomach, as

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