Pic shows: Scans of Xiao Wenâs stomach
Doctors have removed a dozen steel nails from a boyâs stomach after he swallowed them as food.
The 10-year-old nicknamed Xiao Wen is thought to suffer from a disorder known as "pica", which is associated with eating non-nutritious substances such as hair, paper, stones, earth or metal.
The "left-behind" child who lives in the county-level city of Lianyuan, in Central Chinaâs Hunan Province, was taken to hospital for scans after his classmates saw him swallowing the 3.5-centimetre (1.38-inch) nails one day.
His grandparents, who are his guardians while his parents work in other cities, were asked to transfer him to the Hunan Childrenâs Hospital in provincial capital Changsha after his condition was found to be more serious than first feared.
Doctor Wen Jiabing said X-ray scans showed clearly the 12 nails inside Xiao Wenâs stomach, and that they could have ruptured the boyâs organs and caused serious internal bleeding if surgeons did not act quickly.
Zhou Weiping, Xiao Wenâs dad, was called from his workplace in Chinaâs southern Guangdong Province in order to grant approval for what was a successful round of invasive surgery to remove the sharp objects.
Xiao Wen had apparently found the dangerous nails lying around on the school playground.
The boy was also too afraid to admit that he swallowed the nails himself, at first blaming five bullies for forcing him to eat the indigestible items.
But witness accounts from his class confirmed that he ate them himself, with his grandparents also saying that he had a tendency to eat paper â consistent with the pica disorder.
Xiao Wen is now recovering from his surgery, and doctors have urged his grandparents to keep a closer eye on him and what he puts in his mouth.
(ends) (Asia Wire Report)
A 10-year-old Chinese boy with an eating disorder is on the mend after surgeons removed 12 nails from his stomach that he had swallowed.
Asia Wire Report (AWR) reported that Xiao Wen is thought to suffer from pica, a disorder wherein individuals swallow inedible items like hair, dirt or metal. After Wen’s classmates reportedly saw him ingest the steel nails, each measuring about 1.39 inches long, which he found on the playground, he was rushed to the hospital for scans.
At Hunan Children’s Hospital in Changsha, Dr. Wen Jiabing said X-rays showed the nails had begun rupturing the boy’s organs and would cause life-threatening internal bleeding without swift action.
After undergoing surgery, Wen is recovering, AWR reported. Doctors advised his grandparents to monitor him closely, as Wen initially denied swallowing the nails by choice but rather claimed bullies made him do so. His classmates said they watched him swallow the objects voluntarily.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), there’s no single treatment that’s proven successful for pica, but adequate nutrition and mild aversion therapy.
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