Background/Aims: Almost all previous studies related to rectal foreign bodies were based on bizarre and striking cases, resulting in a reporting bias. Our aim was to clarify the clinico-epidemiological findings of rectal foreign body (RFB) in a general population. Methods: Using a national administrative database in Japan, we identified patients who underwent in-hospital treatment for rectal foreign bodies from 1 July 2007 to 31 March 2013. Results: A total of 648 RFB patients with 666 presentations were identified during the study period. The number of male patients was 526 (81.1%). The incidence of a RFB was most frequently seen in males who were in their 60s and in females who were in their 80s. The overall in-hospital mortality was 1.2%. Compared with males, females had a significantly higher proportion of in-hospital death (0.4 vs. 4.8%, p = 0.001), perforation and peritonitis (5.2 vs. 12.8%, p = 0.004), and sepsis (1.1 vs. 4.0%, p = 0.04). Conclusion: This study showed the clinico-epidemiological findings of rectal foreign bodies in a general population, and established that there was a low mortality rate. It was also found that females were significantly more likely to have a severe outcome following a RFB than males.

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