CT evaluation of self-induced and retained foreign bodies in the abdomen and pelvis


      • 10–20% of GI foreign objects are removed endoscopically or surgically.
      • CT is the most useful imaging modality for locating foreign bodies.
      • Multiplanar reformats improve visualization of foreign bodies & surrounding tissues.
      • 3D rendering can further improve identification of retained foreign bodies.


      Computed tomography (CT) can both locate and identify foreign bodies as well as pinpoint complications to help direct treatment. Retained foreign bodies in the abdomen and pelvis can lead to perforation, obstruction, intussusception, fistula formation, and abdominal abscess formation. This article reviews the imaging appearance of incidentally found common foreign bodies and the role of CT in identifying unsuspected foreign bodies.


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