Idea Exchange: Give giving sets a try when dealing with foreign bodies

August 10, 2016

Try this tip for avoiding tears when removing thin, linear intestinal foreign bodies.

We need your ideas!

We pay $50 for regular submissions (preferably with photos) and $75 for videos if we publish them online. Email, or write to: Idea Exchange Editor, 8033 Flint, Lenexa, KS 66214.

Thin, linear intestinal foreign bodies can be tricky to remove, as excessive traction can end up tearing them into small pieces. But rather than making multiple incisions to remove small segments of embedded material, I've found it's often possible to free up much larger segments using lengths of plastic giving sets.

First, tie a knot between the free end of the foreign body and a couple of feet of nylon or other firm suture material, then feed the suture material through the length of the giving set. Next, gently advance the giving set along the foreign body to free it from the intestinal wall. Using this method, I've been able to manage most of most foreign bodies of this kind through a single enterotomy incision.


Stuart Fitzgerald, MVB, MANZCVS

Thurles, County Tipperary, Ireland


Editor's note: The author of the tip is from the U.K., where giving set refers to an intravenous fluid administration set.