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View Full Version : Just ate a glass marble....ER or Bathroom?


Phlosphr
12-22-2002, 02:14 PM
OK the marbel is about 1cm in diameter and Mrs.Phlosphrs friend just swallowed it. She's fine but obviously this little glass sphere isn't going to biodegrade but will it pass like normal? It's not broken or anything, just a small marble? Should we go to the ER or will she be fine... She doesn't feel bad at all and she obviously didn't choke as I wouldn't be writing this had she.

tomndebb
12-22-2002, 02:22 PM
If it is glass, it is pretty inert. If it was not cracked or otherwise compromised before it was swallowed, it should pass on through with no complications.

If it doesn't show up in a day or so, she might want to think about an x-ray, (scheduled so as to be lower in cost), to be sure that it is not nestled in some nook or cranny where it could cause a problem as stuff builds up around it, but I wouldn't spend money on ER or similar expense.

Ringo
12-22-2002, 02:23 PM
Call the ER and ask them. I suspect it will pass on its own.

Phlosphr
12-22-2002, 02:28 PM
Ringo very good idea. I'll check back in a minute or so and let ya know what they said....

Phlosphr
12-22-2002, 02:37 PM
Well the ER said to come in and get an x-ray immediately. But her primary care physician said to wait till morning and see if it passes...

UUHH!!!.....I think we're going in to the ER... Mrs.Phlosphr doesn't like taking risks... I'll check back soon.

Ringo
12-22-2002, 02:39 PM
Good luck!

ginger57
12-22-2002, 03:34 PM
My 10 year old daughter swallowed a silver metal marble and we waited it out. It passed fien and so she was fine too.

Qadgop the Mercotan
12-22-2002, 04:35 PM
FTR, I agree with the primary care doc.

QtM

japatlgt
12-22-2002, 04:37 PM
This too will pass. X-Rays would be pre-cautionary but it will most likely go right on thru. YMMV :)

HighSoci
12-22-2002, 05:47 PM
I have found everything from pennies to marbles to buttons in my baby's diaper. It will pass just fine. Of course the ER is going to have you come in for some X-rays..... how much do you think they make off of each one they take and just for the visit alone. As long as she wasn't complaining about pain or anything like that, you have nothing to worry about.

x-ray vision
12-22-2002, 05:53 PM
I'm an ER x-ray tech and I'll tell you from experience what will happen: Doc: hmm, lets take a look at the x-ray. Yup, she swallowed something. OK, go home and if it doesn't pass in a couple of days come back.

Don't waste your time.

reprise
12-22-2002, 05:54 PM
You have to PAY for visits to the emergency room in the US? :eek:

Koxinga
12-22-2002, 06:03 PM
Everybody has to pay all over the world. In our case, we pay cash on a case by case basis, rather than through our taxes on a collective basis.

reprise
12-22-2002, 06:14 PM
Originally posted by Doghouse Reilly
Everybody has to pay all over the world. In our case, we pay cash on a case by case basis, rather than through our taxes on a collective basis.

Point taken. I just can't conceive of having to worry about whether I had enough cash in my pocket to go to the hospital in the case of an emergency - it's been bad enough worrying whether I've got enough cash for a taxi home the times we've gone in by ambulance, never mind the cost of the visit itself.

Una Persson
12-22-2002, 06:24 PM
Originally posted by reprise
Point taken. I just can't conceive of having to worry about whether I had enough cash in my pocket to go to the hospital in the case of an emergency - it's been bad enough worrying whether I've got enough cash for a taxi home the times we've gone in by ambulance, never mind the cost of the visit itself.
Depends upon your insurance plan, reprise. For example, I pay $10 at the time of the visit, and then from $75-$249 later on depending on what is done to me there. If I go a second time in one year, I pay $10, total. At one time I thought it was much more, but I was wrong. But everyone's health insurance is different.

If you are completely destitute, you go in to a State, University, or City hospital (at least around here), which are equal quality (IME) to any other, and they don't bill you.

It's better than in *some* countries, where the ambulance drivers will simply *not take you in* if you are a foreigner unless you have a valid credit card or cash. In the US, you get taken in and get treatment, plain and simple, and your citizen status doesn't mean anything. Sure, you will be harassed about the bill, but at least the ambulance won't leave you on the street like an animal to die because you happen to not be on their National health plan.

Koxinga
12-22-2002, 06:29 PM
Originally posted by Anthracite
It's better than in *some* countries, where the ambulance drivers will simply *not take you in* if you are a foreigner unless you have a valid credit card or cash. In the US, you get taken in and get treatment, plain and simple, and your citizen status doesn't mean anything. Sure, you will be harassed about the bill, but at least the ambulance won't leave you on the street like an animal to die because you happen to not be on their National health plan.

You can guess the followup question: what country was this?

jmpride62
12-22-2002, 06:56 PM
If the hospital takes Medicare (and most do I believe) then you are entitled to screening, emergency care, and appropriate transfer regardless of your ability to pay. In other words, you have to be stable before they can legally transfer you to a teaching hospital, charity hospital, etc. Don't forget, poor people can sue for malpractice too.

Boyo Jim
12-22-2002, 07:17 PM
Back to the OP:

Personally, I'd take it on faith that it will pass. "Cause I sure wouldn't want to search for it.

Princhester
12-22-2002, 08:01 PM
When I was a kid my mum couldn't tell the difference between ball bearings and those little confectionary silver balls that go on top of cakes.

Later, Dad farted and shot the cat.

InternetLegend
12-22-2002, 08:06 PM
To meld the OP and the insurance question: I worked for the medical department (administration side) of a major HMO some time back, and we would have declined that particular ER bill when it came in. Our criterion for an ER visit was that the patient be in danger of life or limb. Marble-swallowing wouldn't have passed muster.

InternetLegend
12-22-2002, 08:08 PM
Er, that's in danger of losing life or limb.

reprise
12-22-2002, 08:13 PM
I don't want to further hijack this thread by asking the many questions I have about the US health care system, so I'm off to start a new thread.

sleestak
12-22-2002, 08:17 PM
Speaking from experence here. I once swallowed a guitar pick. I had to go to the ER because is got caught in my throat. I went to the ER and they used a fiber optic thingy and pushed it down my throat and told me to go home and wait for it to pass. It passed a day later with no pain.

I wouldn't worry about it unless there is pain or it doesn't come out. (Regretably you gotta check for it)

Slee

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 08:28 PM
My crushed vertabrae didn't need hospitalization ( just stayed in bed there and took painkillers until it healed - stuff I could have done at home) so I don't think a digested marble will.

Duckster
12-22-2002, 08:30 PM
Brings new meaning to the phrase, "... losing your marbles ..."

:D

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 08:32 PM
or brings a new phrase "... eating your marbles ..."

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 08:35 PM
Do people really search poo to see if something passed?

InternetLegend
12-22-2002, 08:39 PM
Originally posted by Lobsang
Do people really search poo to see if something passed? My mother, bless her heart, has some graphic, disturbing stories on the subject. One of her children (ahem) had the habit of carrying coins in his or her mouth.

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 08:54 PM
Did that child, by any chance, ever grow up, and then register on a popular message board under the name of InternetLegend?

Snetho
12-22-2002, 09:19 PM
Can I ask why she had a marble in her mouth in the first place?

cdhostage
12-22-2002, 09:26 PM
As long as the glass doesn't break there will be no problem.
It looks like this question has already been resolved though.

I wonder - if the thing DID get caught somewhere, perhaps one of the turns of the small intestine, it would cause blockage. I mean, the SI is supposed to only have semiliquid mush going through it - and I don't know how wide said gut is supposed to be.
I wonder I wonder... how long before such a blockage would cause serious problems. Certainly less than a day before pain is felt, but hours, tens of minutes? Hmm. Stuff is supposed to be moving constantly.

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 09:33 PM
The glass is highly unlikely to break. It is not likely to be digested (taken into the bloodstream). And if a turd the width of a golf ball can fit through the intestines then a marble can.

Lobsang
12-22-2002, 09:36 PM
Originally posted by Snetho
Can I ask why she had a marble in her mouth in the first place?

Yes.

InternetLegend
12-22-2002, 09:45 PM
Originally posted by Lobsang
Did that child, by any chance, ever grow up, and then register on a popular message board under the name of InternetLegend? She may have, but if so, the other members of that board can be assured that she no longers uses her mouth as a coin purse (although she still has a vivid memory of the different ways that dimes, nickels, and pennies taste).

Should you ever find yourself needing to inspect poo, you can obtain a specimen by stretching plastic wrap (or one of those brown paper inserts from the newspaper) over the toilet rim under the seat. I think the inspection process itself is fairly intuitive, although I will say that plastic gloves and plastic knives can be very helpful tools.

benson
12-22-2002, 10:23 PM
Originally posted by Lobsang
Do people really search poo to see if something passed?

You betcha. In the hospital we often have to check to see if someone has passed a polyp.

Jonno
12-23-2002, 12:48 AM
Originally posted by InternetLegend

Should you ever find yourself needing to inspect poo,


I also believe that the liberal use of a freezer can be very useful to those needing to inspect.

Wikkit
12-23-2002, 03:21 AM
Would a glass marble even show up on an X-ray?

scr4
12-23-2002, 05:21 AM
Originally posted by Wikkit
Would a glass marble even show up on an X-ray?
Sure. Silicon absorbs twice as much X-rays as carbon (i.e. it's twice as opaque) for the same area density. Glass is also much more dense than human tissue.

Phlosphr
12-23-2002, 07:16 AM
Wikkit, yes glass does show up on X-Ray and Scr4 is right, it was quite a different color than anything else she had in her midsection.

So we ended up at the ER because my wife, Mrs.Phlosphr has a little node in her brain that makes her worry incessantly over small seemingly trivial things. Thats not to say this was a trivial thing but we did end up spending an hour and a half in the ER just to have a Physicians Assistant stand in for the radiologist and say, "Well if it doesn't pass in another day or two come back in for another x-ray...I wouldn't worry though and you should be fine..."

Uh yeah...thanks alot, this premi-doctor seemed so happy with himself looking at our friends x-ray and touting the fact that if she were not ok in a couple days to come back in for another x-ray, pay more money to the hopsital he works in, and wait in the same waiting room with three people who want to self commit because they think they saw GOD and a teenage mother who lost the thermometer up her babies ass and can't get the child to stop screaming....

I think not....though we did get a call early this morning from Mrs.Phlosphrs friend saying it "IT CAME OUT!!!!" so that was good. But the whole ordeal last night brought new light to the situation in hospitals, as I have witnessed things in the past similar to last night and they has to be a better way to diagnose, treat and follow up with patients who don't have insurance...
Our friend did have insurance but the mother sitting across the hall from us who needed a baby-proctologist didn't... she was still there when we left. How can someone not have insurance with a brand new baby, this girl could not have been over 16 and I just don't understand it. :confused:

Annie-Xmas
12-23-2002, 07:39 AM
My dentist told me that sometimes tooth caps come off and people swallow them and they have to retrieve them after they pass. Sometimes they put them back into their months.

(Insert barfy smiley here)

Corrvin
12-23-2002, 07:55 AM
How can someone not have insurance with a brand new baby...

Uhm, well, how many 16 year olds do you know who have jobs with benefits?

Corr

Rug Burn
12-23-2002, 07:56 AM
I remember swallowing a peach pit as a child :eek: . A marble is less than childs play.

Coda
12-23-2002, 08:13 AM
Uhm, well, how many 16 year olds do you know who have jobs with benefits?

There is such thing as state aid and why this young mother didn't have that is beyond me?

Ferret Herder
12-23-2002, 09:23 AM
Originally posted by Coda
There is such thing as state aid and why this young mother didn't have that is beyond me?

If the baby is a true newborn, the mom might not have put the baby on public aid yet, or the paperwork might not have come through. In my admittedly poor understanding of it (I've worked in hospitals in IL for nearly 7 years now, but not in billing of procedures per se), at least in IL you ought to be able to have a month of coverage retroactive from the date that it becomes effective - in other words, public aid will cover procedures done for one month before the start date if you bring them the bills.

What I hope was going on is that the ER physician or nurse called for their social worker to discuss with the teen mom a plan to gain coverage for her baby.

Dinsdale
12-23-2002, 11:55 AM
Glad everything came out okay in the end.
Or came out of the end okay.

All I can add is, in my son's case, those pennies sure come out shiney!

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