Lithium battery lodged in the oesophagus: A report of three paediatric cases

Arrigo Vittorio Barabino, Paolo Gandullia, Silvia Vignola, Serena Arrigo, Lucio Zannini, Pasquale Di Pietro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Over the last years the ingestion of disk batteries has become frequent in children with serious consequences. The severity of injuries is related to the growing use of new lithium batteries that may cause catastrophic damages when lodged in the oesophagus. Methods: The notes of three consecutive children with lithium batteries lodged in the oesophagus, admitted to our Institute from 2010 to 2014, were reviewed. Clinical presentation, management, and outcome were considered. Results: The first child, a 22-month-old girl, died of a sudden exsanguination due to an aorto-oesophageal fistula. The second case, a 5-year-old boy, had an exploratory thoracotomy to exclude aortic lesion before battery removal, and a spontaneous oesophageal perforation. The third child, a 18-month-old boy, fully recovered after suffering ulcerative oesophageal burns. Conclusion: Lithium battery lodged in the oesophagus is a paediatric emergency requiring a multidisciplinary approach that can be implemented in a tertiary children's hospital.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2950
Pages (from-to)984-986
Number of pages3
JournalDigestive and Liver Disease
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2015


  • Aorto-oesophageal fistula
  • Children
  • Lithium battery ingestion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology
  • Hepatology


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