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Images in...
Images in paediatrics: Ironing board impalement
  1. Fiona Napier,
  2. Simon Fountain-Polley,
  3. Chetana Kallapa
  1. Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham, UK
  1. pollgysim{at}

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A 12-year-old boy was admitted with a metal foreign body embedded in his right buttock. While carrying an ironing board down the stairs he tripped and impaled himself on the ratchet mechanism (fig 1). The fire brigade helped free the boy from the board. x Rays revealed the foreign body was close to the hip joint (fig 2). Surgical removal was uneventful and the patient was discharged the following day after receiving tetanus immunoglobulin and vaccination. No other ironing board related injuries are reported in the literature. However, there are anecdotal reports of ironing boards being used to surf down flights of stairs. Care should be taken when carrying objects on the stairs, and domestic appliances should only be used as intended.

Figure 2 x Ray showing ratchet mechanism close to the hip joint.


This article has been adapted from Napier Fiona, Fountain-Polley Simon, Kallapa Chetana. Images in paediatrics: Ironing board impalement Archives of Disease in Childhood 2007;92:758


  • Competing interests: None.