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We aimed to determine the incidence of esophageal strictures in corrosive ingestions and potential predictors of severe injury.This was a retrospective cohort study of corrosive ingestions from a toxicology unit (1987–2013) with telephone follow-up at least 1 y post-ingestion. Clinical data and investigations were obtained from a toxicology admission database. The primary outcome was esophageal stricture. Other outcomes included in-hospital mortality, endoscopy grade and early complications.There were 89 corrosive ingestions; median age, 31 y [1–87 y; 46 females], including 13 strong alkalis (pH > 12), 8 strong acids (pH < 2), 29 domestic bleaches, 30 other domestic products, 6 non-domestic products and three unknown. Three patients died in hospital within 24 h (phenol, sodium azide, HCl). Two developed strictures (both strong alkalis): one had complete esophageal destruction; another developed a stricture after 25 d (inpatient grade 2A endoscopy). 24 patients were asymptomatic and discharged without complication. 65 patients were symptomatic (4 catastrophic injuries). 61 reported sore mouth/throat (50), abdominal pain (21), chest pain (17), dysphagia (13); 28 had an abnormal oropharyngeal examination. 25/61 symptomatic patients underwent inpatient endoscopy: normal (3), grade 1 (5), grade 2 (15) and grade 3 (2). Of 88 patients, 12 died (3 inpatients, 9 unrelated), 28 couldn't be contacted and 48 were contacted after 1.7–24 y, including two with strictures. Five couldn't be interviewed (normal endoscopy (1), no dysphagia (3) and stroke (1). 4/41 interviewed reported dysphagia but no objective evidence of stricture.All inpatient deaths and severe complications were apparent within hours of ingestion, and occurred with highly corrosive substances. One delayed stricture occurred, not predicted by inpatient endoscopy.