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Background: Foreign bodies (FBs) in the upper gastrointestinal tract are produced chiefly by accidental swallowing but rarely produce symptoms. Removal of FBs is not an infrequent challenge for upper gastrointestinal endoscopy. The aim of this study is to elicit our experience in a 5-year period in dealing with FBs in the upper gastrointestinal tract using upper endoscopy.
Methods: This retrospective study was conducted at Zagazig University Hospitals, Egypt, over a 5-year period. We reviewed all patients' files with full notations on age, sex, type of FB and its anatomical location, treatments, and outcomes (complications, success rates, and mortalities). Patients with incomplete files and those with FBs not identified at the endoscopic examination were excluded.
Results: A total of 45 patients were identified. Their ages ranged from 6 months to 102 years. Slight male predominance was noticed (53.3%). The most frequent presentation was a history of FB ingestion without any associated manifestations (44.4%). Coins were the most commonly encountered FBs (14/45). Esophagus was the most common site of trapping (27/45). The overall success rate was 95.6% (43/45). Upper endoscopy successfully resolved the problem by either FB removal (41/43) or dislodgment of the impacted fleshy meat to the stomach (2/43). Two cases were referred for surgical removal. The rate of complications was 6.7%. Furthermore, no mortalities due to FB ingestion or removal had been reported throughout the study.
Conclusion: Our experience with FB removal emphasizes its importance and ease when performed by experienced hands, at well-equipped endoscopy units, and under conscious sedation in most cases, with high success rates and minor complications.
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