A dieter has astonished doctors by apparently placing a medical vomit tube in her throat to help her lose weight.
She had told surgeons in Changsha City, central China, on 29th May that she had accidentally swallowed a drinking straw.
But instead they found an emetic tube with a fork taped to one end, apparently to make it easier to insert and withdraw.
She told doctors she had accidentally swallowed the straw she was using to drink milk tea, and asked them if they could take it out.
The girl claimed that after swallowing the straw, she began feeling nauseous and felt something was wrong.
She said (in Chinese): “I went to several hospitals last night, but they all said that the digestive endoscopy room would not work on Sunday, so I came to the fourth hospital of Changsha City to try my luck.”
The doctor who received her for treatment, Liu Shouxing, sent her for a CT scan and quickly confirmed the presence of a tubular foreign body in the girl’s esophagus and stomach.
Doctors then performed urgent surgery, successfully removing the foreign body, which promptly revealed the lodged drinking straw was not a straw at all.
It turned out that what she swallowed was an emetic tube.
The girl later confessed that she had used the tube to lose weight, and swallowed it by mistake.
Doctor Liu said (in Chinese): “This is almost like artificial “stomach lavage” for yourself in a fully awake state!”
Dr. Liu reported that people now seem to be intubating themselves to induce vomiting.
“This is the first time I have seen it”, he added.
The whole emetic tube was reported to be about 30 cm long and 1.5 cm in diameter.
It was reported that the middle of the tube was wrapped in transparent tape, and one end had a fork.
Dr. Liu said that the entrance of the human esophagus is usually in a constricted state, so such a large tube can only be forced into it.
Dr. Li Jianguo, director and chief physician of the Department of Gastroenterology, said that the purpose of inducing vomiting is to reduce the absorption of food by the human body.
He warned this method could cause significant health problems, such as mucosal damage and bleeding in the pharynx and digestive tract, which can lead to digestive system dysfunction, electrolyte imbalance – and even a heart attack.