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Case report
Management of a trichobezoar caused by consumption of artificial hair extensions

Abstract

Trichobezoars are rare, but most commonly found in young women with trichophagia and trichotillomania. Complications can include iron deficiency anaemia and gastric erosion or, rarely, perforation. A 19-year-old woman presented with epigastric pain, vomiting and lethargy. Initial investigations revealed a palpable abdominal fullness on examination and iron deficiency anaemia. Oesophagogastroduodenoscopy found a large trichobezoar associated with gastric erosions, polyps and an ulcer. Subsequently, the patient reported previous consumption of artificial hair extensions, which ceased 5 years previously. Attempts to remove the trichobezoar by endoscopy were ineffective and in line with current literature, laparotomy was successful. This case describes a rare cause of trichobezoar and emphasises the importance of appropriate initial investigations and definitive management.

  • endoscopy
  • stomach and duodenum
  • gastrointestinal surgery
  • impulse control disorders
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