In 1947 a Live Fish Got Stuck in a Man’s Throat: Here’s How They Removed It

PIC: Klem (CC)

PIC: Klem (CC)

Here’s one from the archives: In 1947, medical personnel had to perform an emergency tracheotomy as part of a complicated procedure to remove a fish that had become lodged in the throat of an unlucky Malaysian man. The man’s family said that the fish had jumped from the man’s net and into his mouth, becoming lodged in his throat. Sounds about as likely as people who visit emergency rooms with rectums stuffed with “foreign bodies” that they “accidentally” fell on while naked, but what do I know? Stranger things have happened. Anyway, this is a pretty gruesome story…

Via Discover:

CASE REPORT: A Malay villager was admitted to the Malacca General Hospital on Feb.27, 1947, in a very distressed state, with laryngealobstruction.There was a marked stridor and retraction of the intercostal spaces. He was throwing himself about on the stretcher and was very dificult to examine, and of course quite unable to give any history. This, however, was freely and willingly given by about six of his relations simultaneously. It appeared that an hour previously the man had been drawing in his net in a rice field. Holding up the edge of his net,he peered over to inspect this catch, whereupon a fish leaped out of the water into his mouth and disappeared down his throat. All efforts on the part of friends and relations to dislodge the fish proving fruitles, it was decided to bring him to the hospital.

On examination the tail of a fish could be clearly seen over the base of the tongue. This was grasped in sponge-holding forceps; but traction only resulted in the tail coming off, making matters worse than ever. The body almost filled the pharynx. Palpation revealed the fact that the long spiked dorsal fin of the fish was extended and firmly imbedded in the posterior pharyngeal wall…

Read the rest at Discover.