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Pain in the neck: the enigmatic presentation of an embedded acupuncture needle.

Chaput JM, Foster T - West J Emerg Med (2010)

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Chicago, Department of Emergency Medicine, Chicago, IL.

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A bedside fiberoptic laryngsocopy performed by the on-call ENT surgeon showed an embedded 3.3 cm metallic foreign body lodged in her right piriformis sinus, and she was taken to the operating room for removal... Direct laryngoscopy confirmed that the foreign body was an acupuncture needle and that it had not been swallowed but extruded from the wall of the esophagus into the piriformis sinus... Upon further questioning, the patient said she had acupuncture therapy in an alternative medicine clinic to treat whiplash-associated neck pain after a car accident... This therapy, in which the acupuncturist had placed needles in the back of her neck, occurred six months prior to her presentation to the ED... She did not recall whether one of the needles had broken, but after the procedure she continued to have pain in the neck... For six months until the ED diagnosis, she blamed the car accident for her chronic neck pain... In general, acupuncture is considered safe... The most common reactions are bleeding, needle pain and skin infections, and vagally mediated systemic symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting and syncope. – In the literature, a few case reports have described more serious complications associated with this practice of medicine, such as pneumothorax, cardiac tamponade and spinal cord injury... Although these are significant adverse problems, it should be noted that these complications are rare... For example, pneumothorax occurred only twice in almost 250,000 treatments... This case describes another rare, potentially hazardous complication associated with acupuncture, in which a broken part of the acupuncture needle was inadvertently left in the patient’s skin and migrated through into her hypopharynx... If the needle had not been identified, it could have led to further complications, such as esophageal laceration, esophageal perforation, vascular injuries, mediastinitis or pulmonary aspiration... This case represents a rare complication with acupuncture therapy.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Lateral soft tissue neck radiograph revealing a needle-shaped foreign body.
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f1-wjem-11-144: Lateral soft tissue neck radiograph revealing a needle-shaped foreign body.


Pain in the neck: the enigmatic presentation of an embedded acupuncture needle.

Chaput JM, Foster T - West J Emerg Med (2010)

Lateral soft tissue neck radiograph revealing a needle-shaped foreign body.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2908646&req=5

f1-wjem-11-144: Lateral soft tissue neck radiograph revealing a needle-shaped foreign body.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: University of Chicago, Department of Emergency Medicine, Chicago, IL.

AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED EXCERPT
Please rate it.

A bedside fiberoptic laryngsocopy performed by the on-call ENT surgeon showed an embedded 3.3 cm metallic foreign body lodged in her right piriformis sinus, and she was taken to the operating room for removal... Direct laryngoscopy confirmed that the foreign body was an acupuncture needle and that it had not been swallowed but extruded from the wall of the esophagus into the piriformis sinus... Upon further questioning, the patient said she had acupuncture therapy in an alternative medicine clinic to treat whiplash-associated neck pain after a car accident... This therapy, in which the acupuncturist had placed needles in the back of her neck, occurred six months prior to her presentation to the ED... She did not recall whether one of the needles had broken, but after the procedure she continued to have pain in the neck... For six months until the ED diagnosis, she blamed the car accident for her chronic neck pain... In general, acupuncture is considered safe... The most common reactions are bleeding, needle pain and skin infections, and vagally mediated systemic symptoms, such as nausea, vomiting and syncope. – In the literature, a few case reports have described more serious complications associated with this practice of medicine, such as pneumothorax, cardiac tamponade and spinal cord injury... Although these are significant adverse problems, it should be noted that these complications are rare... For example, pneumothorax occurred only twice in almost 250,000 treatments... This case describes another rare, potentially hazardous complication associated with acupuncture, in which a broken part of the acupuncture needle was inadvertently left in the patient’s skin and migrated through into her hypopharynx... If the needle had not been identified, it could have led to further complications, such as esophageal laceration, esophageal perforation, vascular injuries, mediastinitis or pulmonary aspiration... This case represents a rare complication with acupuncture therapy.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus