Most of us can’t fathom what it’s like to open up a human body and poke around inside of it, but for surgeons, that’s just another day and another dollar.
That doesn’t mean every day is the same, though, or that there are never surprises – and I imagine these 18 surgeons were more than a little shocked the day they discovered something totally weird inside a patient.
18. Hard to believe.
Hamster is #1.
An entire door knob which ripped out of the door, screws and all. (The guy SWEARS he fell while putting on his shoes. After that, every time someone changed shoes to go to the OR, our little 80 yro Path would say, “Watch out for the door knob! Don’t turn your back on it!” And laugh himself into a crying fit. Absolutely magical to see.)
This ones not my story. A buddy worked for a gyn. Had a pregnant pt come in to remove rotting fruit from her vagina… several times a month. Her husband had a kink. They called her ‘Fruit Salad.’
Not internal but external, a pt came in after being stabbed, at a county bar, and did not want his pants cut off. Turns out he had a kiolbassa sausage taped to his inner thigh so it looked like a bulge in his Ranglers.
The strangest one would be pulling out a 10 inch long strand of free floating, unpigmented, hair from a 9 yro girl’s abdominal cavity. No idea how it got there.
Edit: To answer some recurring questions, it definitely was not from a teratoma and was found by chance while performing another procedure. She then had exploratory surgery to further investigate and nothing abnormal was found.
17. Steel rebar.
Surgeon here. Trauma patient with who fell on steel rebar and it went in one side of the chest and out the other side long ways. Somehow missed his heart, esophagus, major arteries. We removed it with no critical injuries.
He came in very stable so we were able to do imaging and see no obvious major vessel or heart injury.
We then removed it in the operating room in case moving it revealed a injury (basically completely ready to crack the chest if he started bleeding, but otherwise just pulled it out).
Got bilateral chest tubes but did not end up needing any large surgeries.
16. That’s horrifying.
Dead cucumber inside a vagina. Wife and husband where playing with it, a bit broke off and never came out. So they just decided to ignore it. Started rotting inside and caused a bad secondary infection.
The smell, secretions, and the sight of those morons’ faces as they were explaining was priceless. One of the (now countless) days I felt something die inside me.
15. Must not have been a huge one.
Guy had put a cucumber down his throat and it broke off so he couldn’t pull it back out. He came in with his wife.
He could still breath a bit around it… not completely occluded. Otherwise he would have died.
14. That’s not supposed to happen.
Not a surgeon but a patient…
I had emergency surgery about 20 years ago in a really small rural hospital.
2 months later I had to have another surgery in a better hospital because the doctors of the first surgery had accidentally left some items including gauze and a small cutting tool inside my body when they sewed me back up.
13. The face I just made.
Bezoar (giant hair ball) in the exact shape of a stomach. Turns out, she worked at a hair salon and was eating OTHER PEOPLE’S HAIR.
Bezoar is such a cool name for a not so cool thing.
12. I’ve never been that drunk.
A man came into my clinic about really bad stomach pains, so I felt around his stomach and gave him a X-ray.
What I found was two pool balls and key cars. I asked how this happened but all I could get out of him was, he was super black out drunk.
11. Some things are worth paying for.
Cement. I work in derma and had a couple of women come with cement injected in their face and didn’t know why they couldn’t feel their face/ do certain facial expressions.
And yes, they wanted a discount dermatologist so they went to Mexico.
10. Oh my god.
Old man comes in with pain and a swollen foot,has an old dressing on his calf. We cut open the dressing and there are insects flying here and there.
The whole area under was infested with maggots. Apparently he got a small prick from somewhere, got a dressing for the wound from a PHC and left it there for 4-5 months. There was no muscles left.
9. Bizarre, for sure.
Neurosurgeon here. Guy came into the hospital with 3 days of headache out of nowhere. Head CT showed a large nail through the anterior skull base(think above the nose, between the forehead).
When asked about it he had been using a pneumatic nail gun a couple days before. He remembered a moment when he didn’t brace the gun right and it rebounded, hitting him in the face. It must have fired a nail when the end hit him in the face and he didn’t realize it.
He indeed did have a small wound in his cheek that fit with the story. Luckily the nail avoided the large blood vessels and other critical structures in the brain.
We had to take him to surgery in order to pull it out. Cutting it out of his brain was weird.
8. They sorted it out.
Had a lad dropped off at A&E with crossbow bolt stuck in his upper thigh. His story was that he was walking through a local park with his loaded crossbow and tripped, shooting himself in his thigh.
Two days later another lad was dropped of at A&E with a Bowie knife stuck in his upper thigh. His story was that he was walking though a local park with the knife in his hand and tripped, stabbing himself in his thigh
It turned out that the first lad was a member of the Burger Bar Boys and the second lad was a member of the Johnson Crew. Both were members of rival gangs and there had been an argument which had been sorted out.
7. Why do people do things like this?
Dentist. We had 2 men come in to reception, one of whom had a snooker ball in his mouth. The man who didn’t explained that they’d been at the snooker club down the road and his friend bet someone £50 that he could fit a snooker ball in his mouth. He won the bet then found he couldn’t get it out. We had to sedate him and dislocate his jaw to remove it.
Dislocating his jaw and taking the ball out was actually pretty quick and easy, the part that took longest was getting him sedated.
Also I had no idea snooker was such an English thing.
6. They stick all kinds of things up there.
Scrub tech here. I’ve seen a flower vase, a fushigi ball, and a toothbrush covered in spray foam insulation and wrapped in electrical tape, in peoples rectums.
5. Real goldfish? Or?
Former ER tech. Had an older gentleman come in with a mayonnaise jar that he filled with water and goldfish up his a$$.
4. Definitely funny.
I am not a surgeon but I knew a girl who would clean up after surgeries, one of the funniest stories I ever heard…
Doctor: excuse me sir, so we found the blockage in your urethra. Can you think of any reason why a peanut would be in there?
Patient: hahahaha oh damn, well my wife and I play a game called feed the elephant. And what happens is she puts a peanut m&m inside my d*%k and she then sucks them out. Apparently one must of gotten stuck
So the chocolate on the m&m melted off and the peanut stayed. So m&ms melt in your dick and not in your hands apparently.
3. That sounds awful.
My mother in law used to be a scrub nurse and she told us a story about a patient they had in the OR who purposely cut up little bits of a metal coat hanger and barbed them so they couldn’t be removed, then proceeded to shove them up his urethra.
I can’t remember the actual medical term for it but he was one of those people who had a mental health issue and wanted surgeries done so he would constantly do terrible things to himself because they would have to surgically correct them.
2. So this is sort of common?
Not a surgeon. Knew someone who ate spoons. Just swallowed them and had surgery to remove them repeatedly. Batteries too.
Also had put pen lids in his urethra but those were more easily removed.
1. A cautionary decoration.
I used to work in medical sales and one A+E Dr I visited had an 8 ball on his desk (it had a little stand and a glass case).
I had to ask – thinking it was a pool competition trophy. It wasn’t a pool competition trophy.
I would honestly have never expected most of these answers.
If you’ve got some experience in this arena, share your own answers with us in the comments!