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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 23(4); 2012 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2012;23(4): 559-562.
A Case of Acute Upper Airway Obstruction Caused by a Foreign Body in the Upper Esophagus of an Adult
Kyung Soo Choi, Dae Sung Lee, Jun Sik Yoon, Jin Kyu Park, Jinho Shin, Kyung Soo Kim, Young Hyo Lim
Department of Internal Medicine, Hanyang University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. mdoim@hanmail.net
ABSTRACT
Aspiration of the upper airway tract occurs most commonly in infants and children as a result of immature interaction between deglutition musculature and incomplete laryngeal reflex. Typically, the presence of a foreign body in the airway can cause difficulty in phonation, acute respiratory distress, and chronic airway infection. However, rarely, a foreign body lodged in the esophagus may also cause these problems. Although acute airway obstruction due to foreign body aspiration to the airway sometimes occurs in adults, cases involving these symptoms caused by the presence of a foreign body in the esophagus are very rare, and no such cases have been reported in Korea to date. The authors report a case of acute respiratory distress, during improving from an underlying alcoholic dilated cardiomyopathy. Stridor was observed on auscultation due to upper respiratory obstruction caused by an orthodontic prosthesis lodged within the upper esophagus.
Key words: Airway obstruction, Esophagus, Foreign bodies, Respiratory sound, Adult
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