Swallowed Sewing Needle Causes Seizures in Siamese

Scooter June 2009Call it a serious case of something that got the cat’s tongue.

“It was on Memorial Day when our Siamese cat Scooter went from happily scampering around to suddenly foaming at the mouth and violently shaking her head,” described Margaret Stedt of San Clemente, Calif. “My husband and I rushed her to the emergency clinic, where they gave her seizure medication and kept her overnight. The following morning we took her to our veterinarian, who suggested we see a neurologist that same day. We did, and as they were prepping her for an MRI exam, a technician adjusting her head and tongue encountered the culprit—a small sewing needle with some thread still attached to it.”

According to Stedt, Scooter had ingested the needle two weeks prior after Stedt hemmed a pair of pants, but it happened unbeknownst to her and hadn’t done damage beyond the tongue until that particular day, when it somehow advanced through her throat and made direct contact with her brain. Once diagnosed by the technician, Scooter was anesthetized in order to painlessly remove the needle. Post procedure, the veterinarian prescribed antibiotics for an abscess that had formed from the punctures. What initially the doctors suspected was the onset of epilepsy was a diagnosis much less grim. The seizures instantly subsided after removing the needle and Scooter has since fully recuperated.

“Scooter was literally centimeters away from dying from simply swallowing something that is in almost every home,” said Stedt. “It’s direct proof that anything can happen, even to an indoor cat that’s young and vibrant. We’ve certainly learned the importance of keeping ingestible items safely away from our pets and want to remind other pet owners to do the same.”



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