The straw which reached the palatine bone

Ten-year-old Omer was playing with a ball while drinking juice through a metal straw. The story ended with severe damage to the oral mucosa and a visit to Hillel Yaffe’s Emergency Room, where he had the hole stitched up with the help of sedation and virtual reality headsets

Ten-year-old Omer Biton from Pardes Hanna was playing with a ball while drinking juice through a metal straw. While playing he was hit in his mouth, which caused the straw to be pushed towards his throat and injure his upper palate. The straw which, as noted, was made of metal, caused the oral mucosa to almost completely detach, and a large hole was created reaching the palatine bone.


Under sedation, and using VR headsets to help dissipate the anxiety, Dr. Yitzchak Shochat, a resident in the ENT Department, succeeded in suturing the mucosa back into place and closing up the hole. Omer was hospitalized for observation in the Pediatrics Department, with him feeling well, and he was later released home.


Director of the Otolaryngology, Head & Neck Surgery Unit at Hillel Yaffe, Prof. Itzhak Braverman noted: “We often have children and adolescents come to us after having inserted hard objects, such as metal straws, pens, and markers into their mouth/ nose/ ear, and this can cause significant damage, such as harm to the soft tissue or blood vessels. In this case, this boy was very lucky that the straw didn’t penetrate his pharynx. I would like to take this opportunity to call on parents to be aware and pay attention that their children are not inserting hard or other objects into parts of their face.”


Dr. Yitzchak Shochat and Omer in Hillel Yaffe's Department of Pediatrics

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