Foreign bodies in the larynx

In the larynx, fish and meat bones, dentures, small items, as well as living creatures: leeches, worms, can enter. Thin fish bones and metal needles, as a rule, pierce directly into the mucous membrane of the entrance to the larynx.

Foreign bodies of small size slip through the vocal chink into the trachea and bronchi. Foreign objects of a larger size can be fixed on the threshold of the larynx, in the lumen of the glottis or infringed in the underlying space.

The most common foreign bodies of the larynx are found in young children. Their stuck in the larynx is explained by the narrowness of the child's larynx. Unlike adults, who have the narrowest place in the larynx is the voice gap, in children the foreign body encounters the greatest obstacle under the vocal folds. Due to the presence of a loose submucosal layer, localization of a foreign body in this region promptly causes edema under the warehouse of the internal space, which infringes on the foreign body and creates an additional obstacle to breathing.

Symptoms depend on the size and location of fixation of the foreign body. With the complete closure of the glottis, clinical death occurs within 5 minutes. With foreign bodies of small size, strangled between the vocal folds, the voice is lost, there is a sharp cough. After a while, the cough may stop. When leeches get into the laryngopharynx or larynx, bleeding or hemoptysis is noted.

In the diagnosis of the foreign body of the larynx, anamnesis is of great importance. In non-acute cases, foreign bodies are removed by indirect or direct laryngoscopy. In emergency cases, when there is no time for attempts to remove, a tracheotomy is produced and the foreign body is extracted through the incision in the trachea. It may also happen that the extraction of a foreign body is possible only through the laryngofissure.