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Ugeskr Laeger. 2009 Feb 9;171(7):534.

[Gastric rupture after ingestion of liquid nitrogen].

[Article in Danish]

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Kirurgisk Gastroenterologisk Afdeling L, Arhus Universitetshospital, Arhus Sygehus, DK-8000 Arhus C.


A 28-year-old male was admitted to hospital with severe abdominal distension and subcutaneous emphysema after ingesting 15 ml liquid nitrogen to produce an impressive burp. A rupture of the stomach at the lesser curvature was sutured by laparotomy. Peroperative gastroscopy showed no signs of cold-induced lesions. Liquid nitrogen boils at -196 degrees C. When heated to body temperature, it instantly expands 700 times, in this case predictably leading to gastric rupture. Therefore, any oral intake of even small amounts of liquid nitrogen should be avoided.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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