Uncommon cause of respiratory failure due to a bezoar in the hypopharynx: a case report

BACKGROUND Trichotillomania and trichophagia cause trichobezoars, which are masses made of hair. The main presentation of this condition is abdominal pain. However, other complications include gastric outlet obstruction, nausea, vomiting, weight loss, malnutrition, hematemesis, diarrhea, and constipation.
CASE PRESENTATION A 57-year-old woman with trichotillomania was admitted to the Emergency Department with the chief complaints of dyspnea on exertion, shortness of breath, dysphagia, generalized weakness, and hoarseness. Spiral chest computed tomography (CT) scan did not reveal any parenchymal lesions Pulmonary CT angiography did not reveal pulmonary embolism. The patient was admitted to the Surgery Department for hand fasciotomy due to contrast leakage, and during laryngoscopy, a trichobezoar was detected that was removed with Magill forceps.
CONCLUSIONS Rare cases of trichobezoars can be observed in humans with gastrointestinal and respiratory symptoms. Precise and timely diagnosis are key for the prevention of more invasive diagnostic procedures.

as reported in: BMC Gastroenterol. 2022 Jan 6; 22(1): 9