Her Hairball Came from Eating Cows-Feet Soup

A bowl of cows-feet soup, as pictured on the Grace Kennedy web site, which also provides a recipe for the soup.

Diet can contribute to the production of hairballs on a quasi-regular basis, suggests this newly published study:

Cows-Feet Soup: A Rare Cause of Recurrent Trichobezoar,” Miles Finbar Kiernan, Sachin Kamat, and Femi Olagbaiye, BMJ Case Reports, epub July 3, 2012. The authors, at Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK, report:

“A 45-year-old Afro-Caribbean woman attended the emergency department with worsening dysphagia, abdominal distension, abdominal pain, shortness of breath and generalised weakness. She enjoyed preparing and eating cows-feet stew and preferred to cook the meat with the hair and skin intact. On admission she had a severe microcytic anaemia and was malnourished. Abdominal x-ray and CT revealed a large gastric bezoar. At gastrotomy a foul-smelling 2.42 kg mass of hair, leathery skin and altered food were evacuated from the lesser curvature of the stomach. She had undergone the same procedure 8 years earlier to remove a similar trichobezoar. Following psychiatric review it was deemed that the patient had no underlying psychiatric condition and had full insight into why her trichobezoar had re-occurred. She made a good postoperative recovery and stopped eating cows-feet stew.”

(Thanks to investigator Kristine Danowski for bringing this to our attention.)