El Wazani, B. and Nixon, P. and Butterworth, C. J.
Eur J Prosthodont Restor Dent, 2018
Publication year: 2018


Head and neck oncology patients are high risk for ingestion or aspiration of dental instruments during treatment, due to altered anatomy and sensation. This article describes a case report of accidental ingestion of an implant screwdriver during the prosthetic phase of oral rehabilitation of a 79 year old oncology patient. The management protocol is described which included referral to the medical Accident and Emergency department, where the object was safely removed from the stomach via endoscopy. A review of similar cases of ingestion/inhalation in the literature suggests implant screwdrivers should be retrieved as safe passage through the gastrointestinal system is not assured. Awareness of the medical history and risk factors should alert clinicians to be extra cautious, and preventative strategies should be implemented at all times. Preventative measures include ligation of instruments with floss/suture material, treatment in a more vertical position, and use of rubber dam where possible.