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Gastrointestinal Imaging

E2776. Review of Normal and Abnormal Foreign Bodies After Surgery

Boyd C1,  Sosin S1,  Anand N1,  Patel J.2 1. Atlantic Health System, Morristown, NJ; 2. Emory University, Atlanta, GA

Address correspondence to C. Boyd (

Background Information: Medical devices are frequently encountered in abdominal imaging and often labeled as “foreign body/drain/stent, clinically correlate with surgical history.” The purpose of this presentation is to learn imaging characteristics of common surgically placed medical devices such as drains, stents, and tubes. By learning the expected location and normal positioning of these devices, one can easily identify when a device is abnormal or dislodged. This presentation will also discuss commonly retained foreign bodies and learn the pertinent imaging characteristics to aid in their diagnosis. Prompt identification of retained foreign bodies is particularly important to decrease patient morbidity and mortality.

Educational Goals/Teaching Points: Teaching points of this exhibit are to learn imaging characteristics of common surgically placed medical devices such as drains, stents, lines, and tubes, recognize normal and abnormal positioning of medical devices within the abdomen and pelvis, and discuss commonly retained foreign bodies and their imaging characteristics to aid in diagnosis.

Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques: Cases to be presented include gastrointestinal (gastric band [Phi angle], pancreatic stent, common bile duct stent, duodenal stent, external and internal biliary drain, cholecystostomy tube, nasogastric tube and Dobhoff tube, gastrostomy tube, jejunostomy tube, rectal tube, and rectal temperature probe), genitourinary (ureter stents, nephrostomy tube, Foley catheter, and intrauterine device), postoperative (pigtail drainage catheter, postsurgical drain, hernia mesh clips, epidural catheter, aorta stent graft, inferior vena cava filter, colostomy bag, and ventricular-peritoneal shunt), vascular catheters (umbilical artery and venous catheters and femoral catheter), surgically retained foreign body (surgical lap pad, sponge, needle, and clamp), and ingested foreign bodies (endoscopy capsule, oral tablets [iron, potassium chloride], ingested coin, battery, screw or nail, dental bridge, and false teeth).

Conclusion: Knowing the expected position of medical devices and identification of foreign bodies is important in decreasing patient morbidity and mortality.