The prolonged presence of a fish bone in the neck

Kenichi Watanabe, Masanori Amano, Ayako Nakanome, Daisuke Saito, Sho Hashimoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Fish bones are one of the most frequently observed ingested foreign bodies in the pharynx-esophagus. Fish bones have a tendency to stick and penetrate the mucosa, which can occasionally lead to severe or lethal complications. The extraluminal migration of fish bones in the upper digestive tract is a rare event, and it is even more unlikely that the foreign body will remain in the neck for a prolonged period. We report the unique case of a 69-year-old woman who remained asymptomatic, while a fish bone was lodged in her neck for 9 months. Finally, after her anterior neck had become swollen, she underwent neck exploration, which revealed that the fish bone was embedded in the scar tissue running from within the thyroid gland to outside of the thyroid. Treatment proceeded without complications, and the foreign body was removed successfully. The length of the fish bone was 34 mm. Intraoperative ultrasonography was able to identify the fish bone in situ using real-time imaging; therefore, we recommend this technique for locating migrated foreign bodies in the neck.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)49-52
Number of pages4
JournalTohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Complication
  • Fish bone
  • Migration
  • Prolonged presence
  • Ultrasonography

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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