Timely treatment by Delhi-AIIMS gastroenterologists saved the life of 36-year-old Avid as they removed a 12 cm toothbrush from his upper abdomen by conducing an endoscopy. The patient, a resident of Sima Puri, Delhi, in December 2017, accidentally gulped the toothbrush when he was cleaning his throat to cure his prolonged constipation, on the advice given by a local quack.
The quack suggested that cleaning the throat with a brush could cure his constipation. It was during cleaning of his throat that he gulped the toothbrush, which got stuck in his intestine. Feeling ashamed to tell people about it, he went to sleep and did not inform anybody in his family and assumed that the toothbrush would come out with his stools.
But in the morning he developed acute abdominal pain. He informed his family members about the pain. They took him to the nearby Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital. The doctors at the hospital referred him to AIIMS as they did not have the facility of endoscopy, the only possible means by which the toothbrush could have been extracted.
Dr Praveen Aggarwal, Head, Department of Emergency Medicine at AIIMS-Delhi, said the doctors at GTBH performed various tests and gave medicines but the pain did not ease.
Dr Aggarwal said that it could be established through CT scan that some foreign object was stuck in the patient's abdomen. The patient then admitted that he had swallowed the toothbrush.
A team of gastroenterologists took out the toothbrush from the abdomen of the patient by performing endoscopy.