[Radiological diagnostics for iatrogenic retained foreign bodies after surgery]

Chirurg. 2007 Jan;78(1):22-7. doi: 10.1007/s00104-006-1279-z.
[Article in German]


Retention of surgical sponges is rare. They cause either an aseptic reaction without significant symptoms or an exudative reaction which results in early but non-specific symptoms. Even if there are no studies which compare the diagnostic accuracy of the different imaging modalities, CT seems to be the most promising tool to diagnose foreign bodies. However, apart from radio-paque markers there are no specific signs for the existence of surgical sponges in CT. Therefore, an experienced radiologist is needed to differentiate foreign bodies from morphologically quite similar differential diagnoses such as abscess and haematoma.

MeSH terms

  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Foreign Bodies / diagnostic imaging*
  • Foreign Bodies / surgery
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / diagnostic imaging
  • Foreign-Body Reaction / surgery
  • Humans
  • Postoperative Complications / diagnostic imaging*
  • Postoperative Complications / surgery
  • Reoperation
  • Surgical Instruments*
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed*