The 5 Unusual ER Visits

Discussion in 'Emergency Medicine' started by Egyptian Doctor, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. Egyptian Doctor

    Egyptian Doctor Moderator Verified Doctor

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    5: Surprise Labor (and Pregnancy)

    Surprise labor as the result of an unknown pregnancyisn't the rarest of our unusual emergency room visits. In fact, TLC has a show, "I Didn't Know I Was Pregnant," devoted to the topic. But it's not a common occurrence, and when it happens, it shocks everyone involved -- including the patient.

    In early 2010, a Michigan woman was surprised when she started giving birth in her home bathtub. Not only was she unaware she was pregnant, but her husband had undergone a vasectomy several years before. A Kansas State student experienced similar shock when she delivered a baby into a toilet as she suffered from what she thought was a urinary tract infection.

    Unknown or surprise pregnancies often go undetected when a woman experiences none of the symptoms (weight gain, morning sickness, loss of menstruation) of a typical pregnancy. So when a woman unaware of her pregnancy goes into labor, she may assume the pain or abdominal discomfort she's experiencing are due to another cause. Or, when she has just delivered a surprise baby and makes her way to the emergency room, even veteran medical staff can be shocked.

    4: Rocky Shows up, Minus Bullwinkle


    As a first-world country, America prides itself on the general lack of vermin in its hospitals. So when a rodent shows up in an emergency room, it can come as quite a surprise. Even more shocking are flying rodents.

    Such unexpected visitors made an appearance in a New Jersey emergency room in late 2011. During the course of several weeks, two different flying squirrels entered the hospital, soared across the ER and temporarily evaded the firefighters (who weren't named Boris and Natasha) sent to capture them. Thankfully, the rodents were caught and then released safely in the woods near the hospital. However, the local fire department -- and probably a few unsettled ER staff members -- are still bracing for the return of the gliding invaders.

    3. Barbecue, Relocated

    Typically, if someone's meal makes reappearance in an emergency room, the way it comes back is conventional, although unappealing. A Texas man, however, ended up bypassing any traditional route of regurgitation or elimination when he showed up to an ER with a stab wound in his abdomen.

    Apparently, the patient had just eaten before the stabbing. So when he coughed, the contents of his stomach came spilling out. The ER staff had to deal with cleaning up the inadequately digested components of a traditional Texas cookout -- barbecue and corn -- inside the man's abdominal cavity.

    2: The Inquisitive Eel

    According to "Memoirs of a Geisha," the Japanese once used the word "eel" as a euphemism for the male member. So an injury in which an eel swims inside a man's penis seems like bizarre collision of reality and double entendre. But this is no erotic tale from an alternate reality; such an incident actually occurred.

    A Chinese man was undergoing a spa treatmentinvolving an eel bath (one similar to the fish pedicures that have become popular in recent years), when a small eel swam into the urethral opening of his penis. The fish then made its way into the man's bladder. The eel was ultimately removed during a three-hour emergency surgery.

    The most unusual part of the story is that this was not the first medical case involving an eel entering a penis. At least one other instance is on record.

    1: An Impromptu Wedding

    When a Michigan woman was rushed to the ER with a perforated appendix on the morning of her wedding, she and her fiancé worried their special day would be ruined. But not if the hospital staff had anything to do with it.

    When the ER workers learned that their patient was missing out on exchanging vows with her intended, they set out to make sure the ceremony happened anyway -- although probably in a much different way than the bride's wedding planner had originally laid out. The staff decorated the bride's ER recovery room, bought her flowers from the hospital gift shop, made her a gauze veil, brought in a hospital chaplain and played the wedding march from an MP3 downloaded on a cell phone.

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