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Dr.Sawhney, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 7172
Experience:  MBBS,MS
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Relative intravenous drug user has broken needle off in vein

Resolved Question:

Relative intravenous drug user has broken needle off in vein and traveling up arm. Will it stop at some point or continue to heart?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 7 years ago.

Veins contain valves which would tend to stop any such broken needle but still it can travel to heart and cases have been reported in orthopedic literature where broken piece of a an orthopedic implant consisting of a metal wire were found in the heart.
The treatment of this was conservative where the small metallic piece were left in the place where it was found.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
relative says needle has traveled almost to shoulder and wishes to have it removed before it reaches torso and becomes more surgery. He is sure it is in vein and not muscle. Would this be a simple operation?
Expert:  Dr.Sawhney replied 7 years ago.
Only an x ray would show if it is at the shoulder level.
If it indeed is at the shoulder level the vein carrying the needle can be explored.This would require anesthesia and is a full operation.
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