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March 16, 2012

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Object in baby's heart removed

LOCAL doctors removed a 15-centimeter catheter from the heart of a two-month-old baby, who was discharged from Shanghai Children's Medical Center yesterday.

The premature boy from Gansu Province suffered serious pneumonia upon delivery and needed intravenous infusion treatment.

To facilitate the infusion and reduce pain, a catheter was put in his vein. But the catheter broke off within a month and started to move inside the boy's body along with blood circulation, eventually sticking in his heart.

The baby was rushed to the local hospital from Gansu Province to remove the catheter.

Because of the patient's young age and 3.2-kilogram weight, doctors opted against an open-chest surgery, which could impose a big risk.

On Tuesday, doctors instead threaded a tube into the baby's body through an artery on the thigh and reached the heart to catch the catheter, which had partially penetrated the pulmonary artery.

Any mistake could have pushed the catheter completely into the heart, causing serious damage, doctors said.

Doctors move the catheter back through the artery on the thigh.


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