Plain radiography may underestimate the burden of body packer ingestion: A case report

Yonah B. Esterson, Vihas Patel, Jeffrey Nicastro, Barak Friedman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Body packing refers to the intracorporeal concealment of illicit drugs. Here we report the case of a 55-year-old body packer who presented with palpitations, visual hallucinations, and a sense of impending death. Abdominal radiography demonstrated five ovoid foreign bodies overlying the rectum. At subsequent gastrotomy and cecotomy, thirty-eight cocaine-containing packets were retrieved from the stomach and ascending colon as well as from the rectum. As the contraband market evolves new techniques to evade detection, evaluation of the burden of body packer ingestion has become increasingly challenging. As demonstrated in this case, plain radiography can grossly underestimate the burden of ingestion.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-60
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Imaging
Volume44
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Abdominal radiography
  • Body packing
  • CT
  • Contraband
  • Drug smuggling

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging

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