Caustic Agent Ingestion by a 1.5-Year-Old Boy
We present a case of caustic ingestion by a 1.5-year-old boy. The caustic agent was drain opener which is a strong alkaline substance. Children in Iran and many other countries are still exposed to not “child proof” (child resistant packaging) toxic substance containers. Ingestion of caustic agents may lead to necrosis, perforation, and strictures. Substances that are ingested more frequently are liquid alkali material which causes severe, deep liquefaction necrosis. Common signs and symptoms of caustic agents are vomiting, drooling, refusal to drink, oral burns, stridor, hematemesis, dyspnea, dysphagia and abdominal pain. Even if no oropharyngeal lesion is seen, a significant esophageal injury which can lead to perforation and stricture cannot be ruled out. If abdominal pain or rigidity, substernal, chest or back pain exists, visceral perforation should be considered. The first thing to be checked is airway assessment. A lot of patients should be admitted to intensive care unit, and endoscopic evaluation, surgical intervention, long-term hospitalization, and worsening quality of life or among the complications. Preventive measures especially at the country level and approving proper legislation for obligating the related industries to produce child proof containers for house hold toxic products are the urgent measures to be followed by all of us.
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