Accidentally Swallowed a Drill Bit…


While physicians often use SERMO to share their difficult patient cases, sometimes they need advice from their colleagues about a medical issue of their own. A pediatrician in the US recently posted:

I saw my dentist last evening for removal of an old, worn down gold crown which has been on a molar for 30+ years. While she drilled into the tooth I felt something hit the back of my tongue and presumed it was a piece of my tooth. The dentist propped me up immediately as I was gagging. I gagged for several seconds then realized that the object was already swallowed. I did not cough at all. I swallowed water without difficulty. Then I was told that I swallowed a drill bit. My dentist asked if I had any difficulty breathing, which I did not. I drank water without difficulty. I told her that I expected the drill bit (1/2 inch long) to move through my GI tract without difficulty.

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