Intracranial Foreign Body in a Patient With Paranoid Schizophrenia

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Abstract

Self-inflicted penetrating head injuries in patients with paranoid schizophrenia are an infrequent phenomenon. The authors report on a psychiatric patient who presented with epistaxis. Computed tomography showed a nail passing from the nasal cavity into the frontal lobe. Given the proximity to large intracranial vessels, a craniotomy was performed and the nail was retracted. The patient later reported having hammered the nail into the nasal cavity with the intention to “kill the voice in my head.” Despite use of the latest imaging modalities, metal artifacts may have limited the assessment of vascular involvement. Surgical decision-making preventing secondary damage is crucial in them.

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