Could a swallowed magnet be removed by manipulation using an external magnet?

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Offline JnA

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prompted by this
Quote
When swallowing magnets, always make sure you swallow them stuck together, rather than singly...
I set about reading some articles (I didn't buy the book - sorry) so now I know why..

but this has led me to question if a person swallowed one magnet.. would it be possible to get it out of the gut (assuming a relaxed sphincter) by putting another magnet on the outside of the body and moving it upwards? (like when you clean a fish tank glass)
What else might hinder this?

« Last Edit: 17/06/2009 19:45:44 by chris »

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Offline graham.d

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It may depend on the magnet shape as to how effective, but, in principle, yes. Asuming a bar magnet, you may need several magnets orientated correctly and positioned carefully so as to not put too much side force on the unfortunately located magnet. As the bar magnet would appear as a dipole and the distance of the external magnets would be much larger than the distance between the poles of the dipole, the force on the magnet would fall off as the cube of the distance. This would require very strong magnets externally.

Don't try this at home folks.

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Offline RD

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if a person swallowed one magnet.. would it be possible to get it out of the gut (assuming a relaxed sphincter) by putting another magnet on the outside of the body and moving it upwards? (like when you clean a fish tank glass)
What else might hinder this?


I've heard of magnetism being used to remove steel particles from the eye.

But the path of the intestine is very convoluted, plus if you were trying to move it upwards you'd be fighting against peristalsis

[Gratuitous video ... http://www.oprah.com/media/20080601_tows_DROZPILLCAM_O_VIDEO_1]
« Last Edit: 17/06/2009 18:55:47 by RD »

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Offline JnA

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if a person swallowed one magnet.. would it be possible to get it out of the gut (assuming a relaxed sphincter) by putting another magnet on the outside of the body and moving it upwards? (like when you clean a fish tank glass)
What else might hinder this?


I've heard of magnetism being used to remove steel particles from the eye.

But the path of the intestine is very convoluted, plus if you were trying to move it upwards you'd be fighting against peristalsis

[Gratuitous video ... http://www.oprah.com/media/20080601_tows_DROZPILLCAM_O_VIDEO_1]


I assumed the magnet is still inside the stomach.. but peristalsis   yes, that could pose problem.

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Offline chris

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Gutted that you didn't buy the book... :(
I never forget a face, but in your case I'll make an exception - Groucho Marx

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Offline JnA

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I'll buy one if you all autograph it.


Nice pun though :)
« Last Edit: 20/06/2009 02:18:04 by JnA »

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Offline LeeE

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...would it be possible to get it out of the gut (assuming a relaxed sphincter) by putting another magnet on the outside of the body and moving it upwards?

Only if they're standing on their head.
...And its claws are as big as cups, and for some reason it's got a tremendous fear of stamps! And Mrs Doyle was telling me it's got magnets on its tail, so if you're made out of metal it can attach itself to you! And instead of a mouth it's got four arses!

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Offline JnA

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You're thinking of the other sphincter...

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Offline RD

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If you were going “up” from the intestines you’d have to get past two sphincters:
one in the stomach (pyloric sphincter) and another in the gullet (oesophageal sphincter).

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Offline JnA

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The magnet is still in the stomach.. as I mentioned in my first reply to you.

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Offline Chemistry4me

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It might get caught at the epiglottis and go down your trachea? [xx(]