Evaluation of a Symptom-Based Algorithm for Managing Battery Ingestions in Children.

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DOI: 10.1055/s-0041-1740537


Objectives: While complications from battery ingestion can be severe, especially with the emergence of stronger battery elements, not all ingestions require prompt removal. We aim to evaluate a symptom-focused algorithm for battery ingestion that emphasizes observation over intervention to investigate its safety.

Materials and methods: Patients were identified through a query of foreign-body ingestion radiographs obtained between 2017 and 2020. A retrospective chart review was then performed of all patients who presented with button battery ingestions to identify compliance with our algorithm, overall outcomes, and complications.

Results: In total, 2% of all radiographs (44/2,237) demonstrated button battery ingestions. The median age of patients was 3.8 years (interquartile range, 2.6-5.3). Most batteries were found in the stomach (64%, n = 28), but were also identified in the esophagus (14%, n = 6), small bowel (14%, n = 6), and colon (9%, n = 4). All esophageal batteries were managed with immediate endoscopic retrieval. Ten gastric batteries were not managed per protocol, with seven admitted for observation despite being asymptomatic and repeat abdominal X-rays demonstrating persistent gastric location of the battery. Four patients underwent esophagogastroduodenoscopy; however, in two patients the battery had migrated past the stomach prior to intervention. All small bowel batteries and three of four asymptomatic colon batteries were managed per protocol; one patient had additional imaging that demonstrated battery passage.

Conclusion: Adherence to a symptom-focused protocol for conservative management of button battery ingestions beyond the gastroesophageal junction is safe and frequently does not require admission, serial imaging, or intervention.

Journal Title

European journal of pediatric surgery : official journal of Austrian Association of Pediatric Surgery ... [et al] = Zeitschrift fur Kinderchirurgie





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MeSH Keywords

Algorithms; Child; Child, Preschool; Eating; Electric Power Supplies; Foreign Bodies; Humans; Retrospective Studies


Algorithms; Eating; Electric Power Supplies; Foreign Bodies; Retrospective Studies

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