Complicated and dislodged airway foreign body in an intubated child: Case report

Katharina D. Graw-Panzer, Stephen J. Wadowski, Haesoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: We report a case of missed foreign body aspiration in a child presenting with status epilepticus. On admission, the patient was found to have pneumonia, which progressed to respiratory failure and acute respiratory distress syndrome. While the patient was intubated and mechanically ventilated, the patient experienced acute respiratory deterioration. Subsequently, it was determined that a previously undetected foreign body had dislodged from the right main to the left main bronchus and was the underlying cause for the child's illness. CONCLUSIONS: A combination of sudden change of physical and radiographic findings with unilateral lung hyperinflation is highly suspicious for an obstructing airway foreign body. This case demonstrates that foreign body aspiration can lead to significant morbidity. It should be in the differential diagnosis for any acute pulmonary process in an otherwise well child because there is no specific clinical or radiographic finding to rule it out.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)915-917
Number of pages3
JournalPediatric Emergency Care
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2012


  • acute respiratory distress syndrome
  • dislodgement
  • foreign body aspiration
  • respiratory failure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Emergency Medicine


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