- A man had dentures lodged in his larynx for over a week after surgery, according to a recently published case study.
- The 72-year-old man went to the emergency room after undergoing surgery because he was having difficulty breathing and was coughing up blood.
- It took doctors eight days to discover that his dentures had become lodged in his larynx.
- The item was successfully removed.
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You know that thing where you can’t find your glasses, but they were just on your head all along? That’s what it was like for a man who unknowingly had dentures lodged in his larynx for over a week after surgery — only so much worse.
The 72-year-old man went to the emergency room after undergoing surgery because he was having difficulty breathing, pain and difficulty swallowing, and was coughing up blood, according to a case study published in The BMJ.
When he first visited the emergency room six days after his surgery, he was diagnosed with pneumonia and given medication to treat the infection and cough. But two days later, he returned to the emergency room.
The man, whose identity has not been released, experienced worsening symptoms. The man said that in addition to the previously described symptoms, he was experiencing increased pain, loss of voice, and could not swallow the medication he had been prescribed.
This time, doctors found the culprit: A pair of dentures lodged in his larynx. The man was shocked — he thought the dentures had been lost in the hospital when he got surgery the previous week, according to the case study.
It’s not immediately clear how the dentures ended up in his larynx.
Dr. Rui Amaral Mendes, an associate editor of BMJ Case Reports, told the Associated Press that this case illustrates how important doctor-patient communication is.
“Stay on the safe side,” he said. “Inform your physician of what’s going on in your mouth.”
A second operation was required to remove the dentures. He was discharged from the hospital six days later.