Sometimes I wonder about the crazy things that emergency rooms and urgent care centers must see on a daily basis. With a cousin who works for a local hospital I have heard many crazy stories about pregnancies, blood, and broken bones that would make many people cringe. One of the most interesting stories I had heard from her included a child who was brought to the ER because he swallowed his entire collection of change from his piggy bank. This lead me to learn more some of the strangest things that have ever been swallowed by people. Here is what I found.
1. 78 Pieces of Silverware– The most shocking case of something odd swallowed has got to be the woman who swallowed 78 pieces of silverware. In 2009, surgeons in the Netherlands got quite a shock when Margaret Daalman, a 52-year-old suffering from a severe stomach ache, checked herself into a local hospital. An X-ray revealed the woman’s stomach was filled with silverware that had to be removed piece by piece to save her life. The woman suffered from a mental disorder that compelled her to consume utensils whenever dining.
2. 10 Lbs. of Hair– This might be one of the grossest things I’ve ever heard, horror stories from medical professional relatives included. In 2009, an 18-year-old girl went to her local hospital due to stomach pains, weight loss, and vomiting, building in intensity over five months. When the doctors operated, they removed a ball of hair that was over 10 pounds in weight and over one foot tall. The psychological condition that caused her to eat her own hair was eliminated after this harrowing medical experience.
3. 400 Coins– This story is similar to the one that got me interested in these cases but more extreme in context. Kuleshwar Singh, 29, visited the doctor because of stomach and abdominal pains and upon first X-ray was only shown to have minor intestinal blockage and lumps. During surgery the doctors eventually found 421 coins, 197 fishnet pellets, three keys, and 19 bolts in the man’s stomach. The form of schizophrenia he suffered from is called pica and makes a person want to eat items of no nutritional value.
4. Mouth Grill– This one was more of an accident than anything but shows why young kids should not be given certain items. At one point, a seven-year-old boy was rushed to the hospital for accidentally swallowing his “grill,” a flashy status symbol piece of jewelry for the teeth. The jewelry slipped off of the teeth and caused the boy to choke eventually swallowing the device. Doctors refrained from operating and the boy was recommended to let it pass through his body naturally.
5. Magnets– In Indianapolis, Indiana a young girl ingested 30 magnets from a toy building set she received as a Christmas present from her father-in-law. Magnets when swallowed can create a life-threatening issue if more than one is swallowed. If magnets in two areas of the body come together, they can rip through intestines, causing damage the same magnitude as a bullet or knife. The toy since has been recalled and a warning label has been added to the product.
6. Wire Mesh– Jail can be bad, really bad. But would you try to eat your way out? A prisoner who was being held in a cell made up of entirely mesh walls made an attempt at escaping by disassembling the wall. After pulling apart the wire he would swallow the pieces to hide them. While painful, upon review doctors decided to let him pass the metal naturally.
7. Cobblestone– In China, a woman that was having a large fight with her boyfriend decided to ingest more than 20 cobblestones. She thought that the stones would pass naturally after a few days but instead they sat lodged in her stomach. When moving they actually made an audible noise. After seeing a doctor, she was advised that surgery would be the best option.
8. Human Flesh– In today’s world, there isn’t much that some people won’t do for fame. An up-and-coming rap star from Los Angeles, California, killed his roommate and ingested part of her lung. He was found wandering around, bloody, with human flesh in his stomach. The record company was to blame as they provided the man with drugs and instructed him to work on promoting his “gangsta” reputation and image.
9. Bed Springs– Wire mesh isn’t the only thing that prisoners have been known to consume in their desperate attempts to escape captivity. In Raleigh, North Carolina prisoners regularly consume items that will get them sent to the hospital for health risks. At least one prisoner located in Raleigh made the desperate decision to eat bed springs to get relief from their jail environment.
10. Bullets– Some people have bad luck when it comes to eating. A woman in California literally ate a bullet while chowing down on a hotdog, and bit into a second one before realizing the issue. The woman took it in stride noting that ingestion may be the safest way to encounter a ballistic.
These are just a few of the crazy things people have put into their body. It always surprises me what some people can manage to do and not give it a second thought. If you know of something someone swallowed that was odd or crazy let me know down below!
X-Ray Technician Schools- 25 Weirdest Things Swallowed By a Human
The Week- 7 Strange Things Found in People’s Stomachs
For more weird information and reading from this author, check out:
Guide to the Weirdest Museums You’ll Ever Visit
Five of the Craziest Sports Around The World
Guide to the Strangest Restaurants You Will Ever Eat At