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Tip of an iceberg: complications of an oesophageal foreign body removal in a dog
  1. Tristan Merlin,
  2. Carol Hoy and
  3. Diego Rodrigo-Mocholi
  1. Department of Anaesthesia and Analgesia, Royal Veterinary College Clinical Services Division, Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK
  1. Correspondence to Mr Tristan Merlin; tmerlin{at}, merlin.tristan{at}


A female golden retriever dog was presented for the removal of an oesophageal foreign body. Clinical examination on admission revealed a mild hypovolemia associated with tachypnoea. Radiographic examination of the chest did not reveal any other condition apart from the presence of two oesophageal foreign bodies. The animal was anaesthetised to attempt an endoscopic removal, and after induction of anaesthesia a severe desaturation and difficulties providing manual ventilation were noted. These signs persisted during the entire procedure, and after recovery from anaesthesia a severe aspiration pneumonia was diagnosed. The animal’s condition worsened quickly and required the use of long-term mechanical ventilation in the intensive care unit. After 3 days of hospitalisation, the animal was euthanased due to the development of an acute respiratory distress syndrome and the lack of clinical improvement.

  • anaesthesia
  • critical care
  • emergency medicine
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  • Contributors All three authors have been participating directly in the management of the case, the writing of this submission and have agreed fully on its content.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval URN SR2017-1050 from the Social Sciences Research Ethical Review Board (SSRERB) of the Royal Veterinary College

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement No further individual data regarding the patient or the owner will be disclosed.

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