Delhi: AIIMS doctors extract needle from 7-year-old's lung

NewsDrum Desk
04 Nov 2023
New Update

New Delhi, Nov 4 (PTI) Doctors from AIIMS Delhi have successfully extracted a needle embedded in the left lung of a seven-year-old boy using a magnet, the hospital said on Saturday.


The intricate endoscopic procedure carried out by the Department of Paediatric Surgery was necessitated due to the location of the 4 cm needle within the lung and the limited space available for surgical instruments, it said.

The boy was admitted to AIIMS on Wednesday in a life-threatening condition after encountering hemoptysis -- cough with bleeding. Radiological investigations revealed a long sewing machine needle lodged deep in his left lung, Dr Vishesh Jain, Additional Professor in the Department of Paediatric Surgery told PTI.

Dr Jain reached out to an acquaintance, who facilitated the procurement of the magnet from the bustling Chandni Chowk market the same evening.


"The magnet, 4 mm in width and 1.5 mm in thickness, was the perfect tool for the job," Dr Jain said.

Explaining the complexities of the procedure, Dr Devendra Kumar Yadav, Additional Professor in the Department of Paediatric Surgery said, the needle resided so profoundly within the lung that traditional methods would have proven to be almost ineffective.

"This realisation prompted a series of intense discussions among the surgical team, aimed at exploring innovative solutions to safely and effectively extract the needle," he said.


The subsequent step involved meticulous planning and brainstorming with the surgical team and their technical officer, Satya Prakash.

"The primary objective was to ensure the secure delivery of the magnet to the needle's location without any risk of dislodging it into the trachea. The team ingeniously devised a specialised instrument equipped with only one jaw, to which the magnet was securely affixed using thread and a rubber band," Dr Jain said.

According to Dr Yadav, the team commenced with an endoscopy of the windpipe to assess the needle's location within the left lung. What they encountered was solely the needle's tip, deeply nestled within the lung.


"The magnet-tipped instrument was carefully inserted. It seemed almost magical as the needle responded to the magnetic force, smoothly emerging from its concealed location. It was successfully extracted," Dr Jain said.

"Had this not worked, we would have needed to open the chest and lungs and extract the needle with the traditional method which would have been more difficult and invasive," he said.

According to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), the family could not provide any information regarding how the needle got into the child's lung. PTI PLB RHL