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It's hard to believe, but it's true: in Britain, doctors discovered a Playmobil traffic cone in a man's lungs during an operation. The patient had accidentally inhaled the part 40 years earlier and had changed the tissue over the years. The doctors had assumed a tumor based on the X-rays.
X-ray shows tissue changes
Doctors often experience strange things in their everyday life. So also in the case of a 47-year-old man from Great Britain. As the British Medical Journal (BMJ) reports, the long-term smoker had had treatment for his chronic cough and experienced a huge surprise there. Because instead of a suspected tumor, the doctors found a small Playmobil toy in the man's lungs.
Toys were a seventh birthday gift
The patient had had a persistent cough for about a year. The x-rays showed changes in the lung tissue, so that the doctors assumed that the smoker had lung cancer. When the man from Preston was then operated on in a special clinic, everyone involved was amazed: instead of the suspected tumor, a small traffic cone from Playmobil had caused the tissue changes.
According to the report, the man could remember that he received the toy on his seventh birthday and at some point did not find it again afterwards. According to his stories, he played a lot with Playmobil as a child and sometimes swallowed part of it. Apparently without any apparent consequences, because until the cough appeared, the man had lived without symptoms for decades.
Complaints go back after surgery
Like the doctors around Dr. Nicholas Denny from Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester knew no other case in which a foreign body in the lungs remained undetected for so long. Since the patient was only seven years old when the plastic part entered his body, the airways were apparently able to adapt to it, the authors said. Four months after the toy was removed, the cough was almost gone, and the changed tissue, among other things, had regressed.
Alert the emergency services if complaints persist
Experts repeatedly warn of how dangerous it can be when children have small parts such as Swallow or inhale coins, peanuts, buttons or plastic particles. In the free brochure "Risk of poisoning accidents in children", the BfR gives tips on what measures should be taken in the case of swallowed or inhaled foreign bodies.
Accordingly, if there is a persistent cough or breathing problems, emergency call 112 must be made immediately, even if a sewing needle has been swallowed, the child must be taken to the children's clinic immediately. In "more harmless" cases or when the child shows no abnormalities, it is important that the parents check the bowel movements to check whether the foreign body is excreted. If this has not happened after a week, the pediatrician should be consulted. (No)