LONG SHARP foreign bodies in the stomach are alarming to patients, their relatives, and their physicians. Of course, they are potentially dangerous but most of them pass through the gastrointestinal tract without difficulty. When lodged in the esophagus they should be removed, usually by esophagoscopy but occasionally, in difficult cases, by thoracotomy.1-3 Once they have safely reached the stomach gastroscopic removal is more difficult, normal passage of the foreign body is more likely, and the best policy is, usually, watchful waiting under close hospital and x-ray supervision. Such a policy was successfully carried out in the following case, which is reported because of its general interest and for reassurance of physicians in other similar cases.
A 15-year-old boy was admitted to the hospital 5½ hours after swallowing a 6.5 cm. (2.5 in.) corsage pin. He had been asymptomatic since the accident and was asymptomatic on admission. Physical examination