Diagnostic Imaging of Non-Accidental Injury and Percutaneous Foreign Bodies: A Case Report from Zambia

  • Ernest Chanda Cancer Diseases Hospital, Radiotherapy Department, Lusaka
  • Osward Bwanga Midland University Hospital Tullamore, Radiology Department, Co. Offaly
  • Suzyo Mutambo University Teaching Hospital, Radiology Department, Lusaka,
  • Mike Chisha University Teaching Hospital, Radiology Department, Lusaka
  • Mulewa Mulenga Surgery Department, Arthur Davison Children's Hospital, Ndola
  • John Musuku University Teaching Hospitals (UTH) Children Hospital, Lusaka
Keywords: Child abuse, Foreign body, Fracture, Imaging, Nonaccidental injury, Zambia


This case report presents the role imaging played in the diagnosis and surgical removal of multiple percutaneous foreign bodies in a 5-year-old child
who presented with non-accidental injuries (NAI) to medical facilities in Zambia. Children are commonly referred for imaging with suspected
accidental foreign bodies, but percutaneous foreign bodies due to NAI are rare. NAI is caused due to child physical abuse and therefore, imaging plays a
major role in the diagnosis and provision of legal evidence. In this case report, conventional radiography (plain film) of askeletal survey was the first imaging requested. This was supplemented with a computed tomography (CT) scan of the thorax and abdomen.

Lastly, foreign bodies were removed under the guidance of the image intensifier. Although, the cases of NAI reported and presented in medical facilities in Zambia are rare, this caseshows that physical child abuse is practiced in ourcommunities. Thus, radiographers and radiologists should pay attention to such cases during imaging and reporting, respectively.


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How to Cite
Chanda, E., Bwanga, O., Mutambo, S., Chisha, M., Mulenga, M., & Musuku, J. (2021). Diagnostic Imaging of Non-Accidental Injury and Percutaneous Foreign Bodies: A Case Report from Zambia. Medical Journal of Zambia, 48(2), 141 - 147. Retrieved from https://mjz.co.zm/index.php/mjz/article/view/864
Case Reports