How many surgeons does it take to remove a fishhook?

October 29, 2020

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Meet Hendrix, a 40kg Labrador Retriever who likes fishing

Unfortunately in his excitement and unbeknown to his family, Hendrix swallowed a fish hook.

After a few days of not feeling so good and vomiting up half his well earned dinner, which of course Labradors do not give away easily, Hendrix was admitted to our Taupo hospital for investigation.

Xrays confirmed the presence of a large fish hook high in the ribcage in the front of the abdomen.

A surgical laparotomy to open the abdomen and then a gastrotomy to open the stomach was required.

The hook was lodged in the oesophagus just in front of where it enters the front of the stomach.

Gaining access to this region in a very large chested 40kg dog is not an easy task let alone having to manipulate a fishhook backwards  up the oesophagus a short distance before removing it via the stomach .

In a great team performance  no less than 10 surgical hands were required to pull other organs clear so that access could be made safely .  The fish hook was duly retrieved, and the necessary zips reclosed. Supportive fluid therapy and pain medication was administered in our hospital for two days and then Hendrix was discharged with tail wag function fully operational.

Hendirix recovered very quickly, and within two days he was back looking for his next exciting adventure, wondering  what all the fuss was about.

Xray of fish hook in Hendrix oesophagus

Surgeons removing a fish hook from Hendriz

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