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Original Articles (Online only) January 2013, Volume 27 Issue 1: e 1-e 4

Predictors of recurrent ingestion of gastrointestinal foreign bodies

IC Grimes | BJ Spier | LR Swize | MJ Lindstrom | PR Pfau

BACKGROUND: Gastrointestinal foreign bodies are commonly encountered; however, little knowledge exists as to the causes of foreign body ingestions and why they occur repeatedly in some patients.
OBJECTIVE: To identify and define patients at high risk for recurrent foreign body ingestion.
METHODS: A retrospective chart review of foreign body ingestion was conducted at a tertiary care medical centre over an 11-year period. Variables analyzed included age, sex, incarceration status, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV diagnosis, success of endoscopy, type of sedation used, method of extraction, complications, presence of gastrointestinal pathology, and incidence of recurrent food impaction or foreign body.
RESULTS: A total of 159 patients with a foreign body ingestion were identified. One hundred fourteen (77%) experienced a single episode of ingestion and 45 (23%) experienced multiple ingestions. Of the patients with multiple ingestions, 27 (60%) had recurrent food impactions while 18 (40%) ingested foreign objects. In the recurrent ingestor group, a psychiatric disorder had been diagnosed in 16 patients (35.6%) and there were 13 incarcerated individuals (28.9%). The average number of recurrences was 2.6 per patient (117 total recurrences). Individuals with a psychiatric disorder experienced 3.9 recurrences per patient, while prisoners averaged 4.1 recurrences per patient. The combination of a psychiatric disorder and being incarcerated was associated with the highest recurrence rate (4.33 per patient). Multivariable logistic regression revealed that male sex (OR 2.9; P=0.022), being incarcerated (OR 3.0; P=0.024) and the presence of a psychiatric disorder (OR 2.5; P=0.03) were risk factors for recurrent ingestion.
CONCLUSION: Risk factors for recurrent ingestion of foreign bodies were male sex, being incarcerated and the presence of a psychiatric disorder.

Foreign body | Recurrent esophageal impaction
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