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South African Journal of Surgery

On-line version ISSN 2078-5151
Print version ISSN 0038-2361

S. Afr. j. surg. vol.48 n.2 Cape Town May. 2010




Saw-toothed fish bone ingestion: A method for propulsion



Emily BroadisI; Wakisa MulwafuII

IM.B. CH.B., M.R.C.S. (GLASG..); Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, Chichiri, Private Bag 414, Blantyre 3, Malawi
IIF.C.O.R.L. (S.A.); Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, Chichiri, Private Bag 414, Blantyre 3, Malawi




We describe the case of an 11-year-old girl who presented with a lump in her neck. On exploration a 4 cm saw-toothed fish bone was extracted from the soft tissue of the anterior triangle of the neck.
Ingested fish bones are a common presentation in accident and emergency departments, but there are only a small number of reports of migration through the pharynx into soft tissues. Rare complications can include oesophageal perforation, haematoma formation, retropharyngeal abscesses and recurrent infections. To the best of our knowledge this is the first reported case of migration of an ingested fish bone in Malawi.


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