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Cases

Foreign body – toy gem in ear

Foreign body – toy gem in ear

A four-year-old male is brought in to the emergency department by his parents because they think he might have something in his ear. The child is not forthcoming with details.

The child has a gem (toy) in his ear.

It is located deep in the external canal and there is no room to maneuver a tool like a Katz extractor around the edge. Because of the smooth nature of the gem, there is also no surface to “grab” for removal.  A tactile approach of using a sticky substance at the end of a probe was also unlikely to work because of how tightly the gem was stuck in the canal. Otolaryngology (ENT) was consulted and presented with images of the object from the WiscMed Wispr. The images clearly demonstrated this impacted foreign body, and ENT determined that further attempts in the emergency department were unlikely to be successful.  The child was taken to the operating room for uneventful removal of the foreign body under sedation. Removal of the object is not painful, but the child does need to keep still so that secondary trauma to the ear drum does not occur.

Available on Wispr University is our article on normal ear anatomy.