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What are the effects of accidental swallowing of coin by a child ?

My son swallowed a coin (we think a quarter or nickel) almost 2 weeks ago. He had to go to the ER and they used a dilator to push it down his esophagus to his stomach. They told us it would pass in the next few days. He is asymptomatic . He denies pain, no fever, has a good appetite , no rectal bleeding, and has had regular bowel movements. Are there any side effects from the metals in the coin? Should I be worried?
Asked On : Sun, 1 Apr 2012
Answers:  4 Views:  936
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ENT Specialist 's  Response

Thank you for your query.

1. The narrowest part of the gut is the cricopharynx (upper opening of the esophagus). If the coin passes through this, it is usually expelled after a couple of days. What is his age?

2. There are normally four constrictions of the food pipe (esophagus) where the coin may get stuck (impacted). Ideally, it should be removed, however many a times it may slip or be pushed down into the stomach safely as it is usually expelled. The next narrow junction is the ileo-cecal junction near the origin of the appendix If it passes this, it is easily expelled.

3. I usually recommend a follow up chest, abdomen and pelvis X-ray after a couple of days as a coin is easily visible and cannot be missed. If it is not seen, it has been expelled. You may also keep inspecting his feces regularly for a few days to try to identify the coin.

4. There is no side effect of the metals in the coin. There is usually no cause for worry unless you find that the coin is still visible on the X-rays.

Answered: Sun, 1 Apr 2012
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General & Family Physician Dr. Shainaz Arif Kaware's  Response
Thanks for the query.
Metal coins are indigestible so as it has passed from the esophagus so hopefully it may have passed through the stools as it was 2 weeks ago.
I would suggest you to get a X-ray of abdomen done.
If the coin is not seen then it is likely that it is passed through stools but if the report shows coin in intestine then you will need to consult a surgeon for examination and do the needful.
Take care.
Answered: Sun, 1 Apr 2012
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General & Family Physician Dr. Chandra Shekhar Sharma's  Response
To some extant Metal can react with acid present in the stomach & salt thus formed can get absorbed & cause side effects depending upon salt formed & quantity absorbed. He should eat fiber rich food & check every stool he pass for coin. X-ray & USG can tell you the exact location of coin. Please consult a general Surgeon or a Getroenterologist.
Answered: Sun, 1 Apr 2012
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General & Family Physician Dr. Kamal Kishore Bandil's  Response
It must have passed by now.

To make clear get Sonography done.
Answered: Sun, 1 Apr 2012
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