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Acta Médica Costarricense

On-line version ISSN 0001-6002Print version ISSN 0001-6012


YGLESIAS-ROSALES, Marvin; MEDINA-MENDEZ, Andrea  and  RODRIGUEZ-GONZALEZ, Andrea. Perforación intestinal por un palillo de dientes. Acta méd. costarric [online]. 2006, vol.48, n.4, pp.219-221. ISSN 0001-6002.

A great variety of foreign objects can be swallowed by humans, a lot of them can perforate the gastrointestinal tract. Toothpicks are particular because they have 2 pointed ends and if swallowed they can be potentially deadly. There is a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations associated with injuries related to a swallowed toothpick. The pre-operative diagnosis of gastrointestinal tract perforation caused by this type of foreign body is difficult because most patients do not ever remember swallowing one. The patient's prognosis depends on an opportune diagnosis, type of medical treatment, patient's associated illnesses and the complications that may occur. We present here the case of a man who had a perforation of the ilium secondary to an ingested toothpick. He did well after surgery.

Keywords : bowel perforation; toothpick; foreign body; acute abdomen.

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