Introduction: One of the leading causes of damage to the gastrointestinal tract in children is caustic ingestion which is sometimes life-threatening. The most reliable way to study the severity and extent of damage is endoscopy, which can be harmless in terms of time and technique. The aim of this study was to investigate, evaluate and compare clinical findings and endoscopic results of caustic ingestion. 

Methods: This retrospective cross-sectional study was conducted on the records of children diagnosed with caustic ingestion, and hospitalized in Qa'em Hospital of Mashhad from March 2011 to December 2013. Intended data were extracted from patients' records and in case of any ambiguity, it was removed by phone call. Obtained data were analyzed using SPSS 11.5 and chi-square test. 

Results: Of 54 patients, there were 36 cases of burn with acidic substance and 16 cases of burn with alkaline. The highest value was related to caustics related to acid batteries (31.5%) and in 77.5% of cases the container of caustic agent was not standard. In endoscopic results, 50 patients out of 54, had esophagus burn such that in 6 cases it was grade I burn, in 15 cases grade IIa, 27 cases with grade IIb and 2 cases with Grade IIIa burn. In addition, mild erythema of stomach in 6 cases, average erythema in 5 cases, mild ulcer in 15 cases, average ulcer in 5 cases and 3 cases with severe ulcer were reported. There was no significant relation between clinical findings and endoscopic results (p=0.68).

Conclusion: Since caustic ingestion can be regarded as a life-threatening factor for children, the importance of observing precautions in the storage of caustics and the role of training and adequate attention of parents to this issue to prevent such accidents is clear.


Keywords: Caustics; Endoscopy; Children
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