Aspiration of the dental crown in an elderly patient

Henrique Hadad, Laís Kawamata de Jesus, Pier Paolo Poli, Idelmo Rangel Garcia-Júnior, Francisley Ávila Souza, Flávio Roberto Garbelini de Oliveira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aspiration of objects and foreign bodies requires quick and systematic care. During emergent orotracheal intubation, accidental dental crown release can cause a threat to the patient's life. This paper aimed to report a case of foreign body (dental prosthetic crown) aspiration and its management and discuss alternative approaches. An 81-year-old male patient, who was admitted to the hospital's intensive care unit (ICU) for meningitis, presented with altered consciousness, and decreased oxygen saturation. He underwent emergent orotracheal intubation. After intubation, chest radiography was performed to check for proper orotracheal tube positioning and lung expansion. The resultant images revealed the presence of a foreign body within the right lower lobe bronchus in the shape of a dental crown. The foreign body, intubation cannula and basket clamp were successfully removed, followed by reintubation of the patient. The foreign body was a prosthetic upper premolar dental crown (24). While care should be taken to avoid complications, if a foreign body is aspirated during emergent orotracheal intubation, endoscopic removal appears safe and effective. Careful creation, placement, maintenance, and preservation of prosthetic crowns are critically important in elderly patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2280-2285
Number of pages6
JournalRadiology Case Reports
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Dental prosthetic crown
  • Flexible bronchoscope
  • Pulmonary aspiration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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