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J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1984 Jan 1;184(1):56-9.

Thread and sewing needles as gastrointestinal foreign bodies in the cat: a review of 64 cases.


Sixty-four cases of gastrointestinal linear foreign body in the cat were reviewed. Most of the cats were less than 4 years old. The most common clinical signs were persistent vomiting, partial to complete anorexia, and depression. Abdominal palpation by itself was rarely diagnostic. Diagnosis in approximately 75% of the cases was possible, however, by using a combination of oral examination and abdominal palpation. Survey radiography contributed to the diagnosis in 86% of the cases in which it was used, based on evidence of bowel plication, presence of tapered, enteric gas bubbles, gathering of the small intestine, peritonitis, intestinal needles, or bowel obstruction. Surgery (gastrotomy and multiple enterotomies) was necessary in 96.9% of the cases, and most of the cats so treated did well (83.9%). Approximately 50% of the cats with linear foreign body-induced bowel lacerations recovered.

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