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Diagnostic and Therapeutic Endoscopy
Volume 2 (1996), Issue 4, Pages 197-202

Clinical Study in 11 Cases of Endobronchial Foreign Body

Department of Internal Medicine, National Kinki Central Hospital for Chest Diseases, 1180 Nagasone, Osaka, Sakai 591, Japan

Received 22 May 1995; Accepted 10 July 1995

Copyright © 1996 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


We report 11 cases of endobronchial foreign body. From January 1982 through December 1994, a total of 11 cases were diagnosed roentogenographically and bronchoscopically at our hospital. These patients consisted of 10 men and 1 woman with a mean age of 58.5 years (range 33 to 77 years). Symptoms on presenting were usually cough, sputum, or chest pain. The foreign bodies were inorganic in 10 cases and of organic origin in 1 case. Three patients were not aware that they had aspirated a foreign body. In 9 patients, the endobronchial foreign bodies were successfully removed endoscopically. One patient spontaneously expectorated the foreign body before bronchoscopy. One patient underwent thoracotomy because the foreign body could not be removed bronchoscopically. There were no severe complications during or after the endoscopic removal of the foreign bodies, but in one patient extraction of the foreign body caused pneumonia after bronchoscopy. In conclusion, flexible bronchoscopy is useful for the diagnosis and treatment of endobronchial foreign bodies.