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Can You Guess The Foreign Body?

Can you guess what this animal's intestinal foreign body ended up being?

Many people are surprised to find out that ultrasound cannot show us exactly what the gastrointestinal foreign body or blockage is. Ultrasound waves cannot penetrate through gas, hence, all the hair clipping, dousing the skin with alcohol, and adding loads of gel to the skin before we even apply the ultrasound probe. This helps to cut down on the amount of air between the ultrasound probe and the skin to allow for better contact which helps improve the image we see on the screen. Gas within the abdomen which can be normal to some degree throughout the gastrointestinal tract or abnormal when it is freely floating uncontained throughout the abdominal cavity, also inhibits our ability to see what is on the other side of it. Ultrasound waves cannot penetrate through dense objects or objects that are trapping gas/gas bubbles within them which is often the case with the types of foreign objects that cats and dogs and other animal species eat. So in many cases, we just see the surface of an object and then shadowing "below" or deep to it which can look like a black-out. This can make it hard for us to tell exactly what an object is. Experience aided by feedback from our colleagues after previous surgeries, however, can give us come clues. Hairballs in cats can have a fuzzy/irregular, rounded appearance. Squeakers, if they have been swallowed whole and are intact, often have a very smooth surface and kind of look like an onion with smaller mirror images of the surface deep to the first, due to reverberation artifact from the air and plastic. Corn cobs, if swallowed whole, often have a straight side with regularly spaced indentations in it. String is thin, linear, and often likes to span from the stomach to the intestines or between intestinal loops when stuck. Metal is often very bright white and refractive. These are just some examples.


So, based on these examples, can you guess what the object in the image above might be?


(Scroll down for the answer)

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(Almost ready?!)

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A squeaker!


Did you guess correctly?

Please comment and let us know!






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