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A woman gets a COVID test swab stuck in her lungs after being screened through a hole in her neck

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Case reports show that a COVID test performed through a woman’s neck in a British hospital did not work after a cotton swab broke into the lungs.

A 51-year-old patient recently underwent neurosurgery and was fitted with a tracheostomy tube as part of his treatment. A tracheostomy tube is a device inserted into the neck and tracheal hole designed to help an individual breathe.

After surgery, medical staff at the University Hospital of the Leicester NHS (National Health Service) Trust sent women to undergo a COVID-19 test as part of their normal protocol before being discharged to a nursing home.

The staff decided to take a cotton swab of the virus from the tracheostomy tube, considering that the patient was breathing through the hole in the neck and could have been infected through this airway.

However, during the procedure, the responsible nurse felt some of the swab snaps and one end fell into the trachea. BMJ Description.

Patients reportedly became “temporarily restless” and began to breathe more violently for some time before returning to normal immediately.

Medical staff then performed a CT scan of the chest, and the first examination of the image showed some inflammation in the lower part of the right lung, but no signs of a foreign body.

Further analysis of the image raised the suspicion of the presence of a foreign body, so the doctor decided to perform a procedure called endoscopy. This procedure uses an elongated flexible tube (called an endoscope) with a camera and lights at the end. To see the organs in the body.

The authors of the case report said that while this general procedure is safe and reliable, it is “high risk” in the era of COVID-19 because it can be infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus. I have.

Medical staff inserted an endoscope into the tracheostomy site and eventually identified a cotton swab in the right lung. It was then removed using an endoscope equipped with a special device designed to remove objects from the body.

The authors found “clear guidance” on how to take a SARS-CoV-2 virus sample from a patient who underwent tracheostomy or laryngectomy (surgical resection of the larynx) and had a hole in the front of the neck. Emphasizes the need for. ” For breathing.

A spokesman for the Leicester NHS Trust University Hospital told the BBC that “additional security measures” had been implemented after the incident.

Coronavirus test
Healthcare professionals will take a sample of cotton swabs during a COVID-19 mass test conducted on October 1, 2020 in Sierra de Jeguas, Spain. The BMJ case report describes how a COVID-19 swab stuck in a woman’s lungs during an abnormal examination.
Jorge Guerrero via Getty Images / AFP

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