A 15 month-old boy undergoes emergency surgery at Mediclinic Al Noor Hospital in Abu Dhabi after accidentally swallowing 13 magnets.
11 January 2021| Last updated on 11 January 2021
A 15 month-old boy was admitted to Mediclinic Al Noor Hospital after suffering multiple episodes of unexplained vomiting and abdominal pain.
The patient was examined by Dr. Nirajan Mukherjee, Consultant Paediatrician at the hospital. Thorough investigations including an x-ray of the abdominal area revealed the presence of 13 foreign objects that were identified by the mother as magnets belonging to his older sister’s toys.
Swallowing more than one magnet poses a greater risk to patients and therefore requires immediate surgical intervention. The reason is that the magnets may stick strongly together causing severe damage to the bowel wall and/or causing intestinal obstruction.
An emergency surgery was performed on the same evening by Dr. Adel Al Junaibi, Consultant Peadiatric Surgeon.
"During the surgery, a total of nine perforations were found between the bowel loops which were successfully restored through a minimally invasive technique after extracting all the magnets," said Dr. Al Junaibi.
He added: "Thankfully we were able to restore the bowel function without having the need to resort to bowel resection which might have affected the child’s quality of life."
Following the surgery, the child was kept in the high dependency unit for a few days where he recovered well and was discharged in a good condition.
10 days later, he was seen by Dr. Al Junaibi to confirm that there were no surgical disorders and the child has resumed his normal activity.
Acting promptly in such emergency cases is vital to limit damage and to avoid very serious complications that can be life threatening.