The All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) has issued an advisory on eating momos properly after a 50-year-old man choked on the food item and died.
Medical experts have taken note of the “first case of man dying after choking on momos and have issued a ‘swallow with care’ warning for momos.
Momos is a popular street food item that contains different types of fillings like paneer, chicken, vegetables. They are relished with an assortment of sauces in steamed or fried form.
What was the case?
According to reports, a south Delhi man was brought dead to AIIMS. The man, who was believed to be drunk at the time, was eating momos at a roadside shop when he suddenly collapsed to the ground.
As per a report by News18, a momo was found stuck at the opening of the man’s windpipe.
The cause of death was neurogenic cardiac arrest due to choking of momos which were found at the laryngeal inlet. The findings of this very rare incident have been published in the Journal of Forensic Imaging in its latest edition.
The report — Corpus Alienum captured in Post Mortem Computed Tomography, death due to an accidental ingestion of “Momos (Dumpling)” — stated the cause of death using Post Mortem Computed Tomography (PMCT) detected a “foreign body lodged in upper airway”.
“Here, the authors are reporting a case, where the deceased lost his life suddenly when he was munching a momo (dumpling),” the report published in Journal of Forensic Imaging read.
What does the AIIMS report say?
According to the AIIMS report, it is “not very common” to encounter sudden unexpected deaths due to blockage of the airway by a large bolus of food. The incidence of choking by food is found to cause 0.66 fatalities per 1,00,000 of the general population every year, it read.
In an interview with Mint, the head of the forensic department at AIIMS, Dr. Sudhir Gupta, talked about the unique case. ”These findings are very important for medicolegal opinion but could be only done by digital coaxial tomography (CT scan). It can’t be detected in traditional visual postmortem examination,” he affirmed.
Dr Abhisehk Yadav, who is the author of the report and an additional professor in the forensic department at AIIMS, noted that at 5x3cm it was a large size of food that got stuck in the man’s windpipe.
”The size of a dumpling is 5x3cm which is quite a big size and people should be aware when eating such type of food,” He said while urging people to perform procedures like Heimlich maneuver—a first-aid procedure which is performed to clear upper airway obstructions caused by foreign objects.