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Foreign Body Removal

Entrust the removal of a piece of glass, splinters, and foreign objects to the medical experts. Discover the importance of removing foreign bodies, the potential harm they can cause when left untreated, and find out how WellNow can assist you.

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Foreign Body Removal

Foreign bodies are unwanted objects that enter the body from the external environment. Examples include wood splinters, metal fragments, graphite particles, and various other materials. When foreign bodies penetrate or lodge into the skin, eyes, ears, or other body parts, they can cause discomfort, pain, infection, and even serious complications. Safe removal is crucial to prevent further damage and promote healing.

How Providers Remove a Foreign Body

Medical providers employ various procedures to remove foreign bodies. They also ensure proper aftercare to minimize complications.

How do foreign bodies enter your body?

Objects can enter your body through various means, including injuries, accidents, inhalation or ingestion. It’s common for young children to get a foreign body stuck when they put objects in their mouth, ears, or nose.

What happens if you don't have a foreign body removed?

Leaving a foreign body untreated can lead to infections, tissue damage, and in some cases, more severe complications. Inhaled or swallowed foreign bodies may cause choking or bowel obstruction. Foreign bodies in the eyes can cause corneal abrasions and vision changes.

What are the most common foreign bodies that need removal?

Common foreign bodies requiring removal include splinters, glass shards, metal fragments, and objects lodged in the ears, eyes, or nose. In children, these are most often a plastic toy or beads.

When should you see a medical provider for foreign body removal?

See a medical provider for foreign body removal if:

  • You’re unable to easily remove the foreign object yourself

  • The object is embedded deeply in your skin or muscle

  • The object is at risk of being pushed deeper into the body by your attempts to remove it

  • A foreign object is embedded in an eye or close to an eye

  • The wound is dirty or deep

  • You’re not up to date on your tetanus vaccinations

Will foreign body removal require surgery?

Not always. Many foreign bodies can be removed through non-surgical methods, depending on the location and nature of the object.

How are foreign bodies removed from your eye?

Providers have many specialized tools to make it easier and safer to remove a foreign body from the eye. Methods can include using fluorescein eye drops to make the foreign body easier to see. Anesthetic eye drops may be used to numb the eye and reduce involuntary movements while your physician examines the eye and removes the object.

Your provider may use a cotton swab, saline solution, or specialized instruments to remove the object. If the foreign body is embedded deep in the eye, a minor surgery may be needed to remove it safely.

How are foreign bodies removed from your ear?

Ear foreign body removal involves techniques such as irrigation, suction, or the use of modified forceps or other specialized instruments. These methods should only be used by a trained medical professional.

How are foreign bodies removed from your nose?

Nasal foreign bodies may be removed using instruments, suction, or in some cases, flushing with saline solution.

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When Should You Visit Us for Foreign Body Removal?

If you experience a foreign body entry, seek prompt professional care. “WellNow Urgent Care providers are equipped to swiftly assess and efficiently remove foreign bodies,” says Melissa Thomas PA-C, Director of Quality Assurance and Performance Improvement at WellNow Urgent Care.

“Timely assessment and treatment is the best way to protect your safety and encourage optimal health.”

With more than 180 locations to serve you at your convenience, great medical care is never far away. When the unexpected happens, just walk into a clinic or reserve a time online for fast, expert care.

Injuries we treat

Helping you when you or a family member is hurt.

Our services are designed to treat an array of common injuries.
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A - E

Animal and insect bites
Back pain
Cuts and lacerations
Eye complaints

F - Z

Foreign bodies
Minor head injuries