55 Batteries Removed From Woman's Gut, Stomach; Irish Surgeons Set New Record

In a record-making effort, doctors have removed 55 batteries from a patient's gut and stomach. Surgeons at an Ireland hospital performed the operation on a 66-year-old woman.

The woman had 50 cylindrical batteries and passed five AA batteries shortly after admission. It was an apparent act of deliberate self-harm.

X-ray of patient's stomach
X-ray of patient's stomach Twitter

Highest Reported Number of Batteries Ingested

The surgery at St Vincent's Hospital in Dublin is believed to be record-making as doctors believe batteries in such numbers have never been removed from someone's stomach.

After her admission to the hospital, an x-ray performed on her showed various batteries inside her abdomen.

Doctors Followed A Conservative Method To Remove Batteries

However, there was no sign of obstruction, perforation, or damage to the structural integrity of the batteries, so a course of conservative management was pursued and the patient passed five batteries over the course of a week, according to the Irish Examiner.

Batteries Caused Abdominal Pain And Loss of Appetite

But other batteries weren't progressing in her digestive system, which led to abdominal pain and loss of appetite of patient. It also forced doctors to decide to perform surgery with a view to removing the batteries.

During the surgery doctors also found that the stomach had swollen downward into the suprapubic area. A total of 46 batteries were removed from her stomach by the doctors.

Some Batteries Were Stuck In Colon

Four additional batteries, stuck in the colon, were milked into the rectum and removed through the anus — this brought the total number of ingested batteries to 55. A final X-ray scan then confirmed that the woman's GI tract was officially battery-free and she went on to have a neventful recovery, according to Live Science.

In cases of battery ingestion, the material could sometime pass through the body without damage but there are also possibilities of batteries getting stuck in the throat. Such incidents can result in life-threatening injuries.

There are also concerns about chemical reactions as saliva jumpstarts an electric current in the trapped batteries, which can burn the esophagus and can result in bleeding and severe damage to tissue. Swallowing batteries also pose the risk of chemical leakage and GI tract obstruction.