Foreign Bodies, Gastrointestinal

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Synonyms

Gi Foreign Bodies; Foreign Bodies; Esophageal Foreign Bodies; Swallowed Foreign Bodies; Oropharyngeal Foreign Bodies; Rectal Foreign Bodies

Definition

Foreign bodies (FB) of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract are defined as any external object, introduced voluntarily or accidentally into the digestive system. Foreign bodies may be ingested, inserted into a body cavity, or deposited into the body by a traumatic or iatrogenic injury. In general, foreign bodies in the air and food passages are the sixth most common cause of accidental death in the United States ( 1). The ingestion of a FB is a relatively common GI emergency that causes significant morbidity. Fortunately, the vast majority of all swallowed objects pass through the GI tract without a problem. Only 1% of involuntary and generally unconsciously ingested FB will perforate the bowel and constitute abdominal emergencies whose diagnosis represents a challenge ( 2). Those that cause perforation are usually sha ...