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Half-penny surgically removed from child, United Kingdom, 1914-1930

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Two hours after swallowing this coin, a three and a half-year-old boy was taken to hospital. X-rays showed the coin to be in his throat, but attempts to remove it using a bronchoscope merely pushed it into the stomach. The coin was eventually removed 27 days later by surgeon Sir Cecil P G Wakeley (1892-1979). It is one of a number of ‘surgically removed objects’ which have been donated to the Wellcome collections.

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Glossary: foreign body

No description.

Glossary: jar

No description.

Glossary: bronchoscope

an instrument used to look into the trachea (wind pipe) and bronchi.

Glossary: x-ray photograph

An internal image of the body that is produced by exposing a photographic plate to X-rays.

Glossary: oesophagus

The oesophagus connects the throat to the stomach. In humans and other vertebrates it is a muscular tube lined with mucous membrane.