The Grapevine

Man, 72, Coughs Up Blood When Dentures Got Stuck In His Throat

denture
The physician checked Keating’s throat – and found the dentures lodged in her throat, nine weeks after she first swallowed them Flickr/Kathy McGraw

According to a recent release, a 72-year-old man’s partial dentures apparently got stuck in his throat for eight days and wouldn’t have been found if he had not started coughing up blood.

Originally, the active 72-year-old retired electrician had first gone to the hospital for a minor surgery that involved the removal of an abdominal wall lump. Thankfully, the wall lump was benign that the minor surgery turned out to be a simple success. With general anaesthesia still in place to keep him numb from the still-healing wounds, the man then went home.

However, he then returned after just two days and reported that there was a worsening pain in his throat. In addition, he was also suffering from a hoarse, breathy voice, ongoing haemoptysis, was feeling very short of breath and had been sleeping upright on the sofa. He was then admitted for aspiration pneumonia and was sent home with medicine such as antibiotics and steroids.

The problem did not stop there since the man went on for another visit, after which he was advised to undergo ENT examination. Upon ENT examination, the root of the problem was then found. A metallic semicircular object was found obstructing his vocal cords. It was the man’s partial dentures that was composed of an all metal roof and three false teeth,  which was stuck on top of his throat.

Pressed against the man’s epiglottis, the partial dentures had already caused swelling and haemoptysis in the general area, which needed immediate removal. After the new surgery, the man stayed in the hospital for six more days before finally being sent home to heal completely.

According to the man, he thought that he had “lost” his partial dentures when he originally visited the hospital for the lump in his throat.

"There are no set national guidelines on how dentures should be managed during anesthesia, but it is known that leaving dentures in during bag-mask ventilation allows for a better seal during induction (when the anesthetic is being infused) and therefore many hospitals allow dentures to be removed immediately before intubation (when a tube is inserted into the airway to assist breathing)," Dr. Harriet A. Cunniffe, an otolaryngologist at James Paget University Hospital in U.K, who led the study, wrote.

denture The physician checked Keating’s throat – and found the dentures lodged in her throat, nine weeks after she first swallowed them Flickr/Kathy McGraw

 

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