(Late 2003, Hong Kong) An unidentified Hong Kong resident, age 50, entered
the Accident and Emergency Department of a local hospital complaining of
abdominal pain. The doctor's examination revealed peritonitis, an
inflammation of the abdomen. Wondering what had caused this problem,
doctors ordered an x-ray and spotted what appeared to be an eel inside his
colon! Could an eel be the source of his pain?
Yes, the man admitted, there was an eel inside him. He had been suffering
from constipation, he told the dubious medical staff, and thought that
inserting an eel into his rectum would relieve it.
The man was rushed to the operating room, where an emergency laparoscopy
disclosed that a 50-cm (19-inch) eel was biting the side of his colon. The
eel also had also taken a bite out of his rectum wall in transit, so to
speak. After surgeons removed the animal and reconstructed the rectum, the
man's pain and constipation were both cured. He was discharged from the
hospital a week later.
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Reference: Surgery, Jan 2004, v135, p110