A British mom with a cold coughed violently -- and dislodged the tip of a pool cue that had been stuck up her nose for 12 years.

Chantel Faill, 31, endured constant headaches, infections and flu-like symptoms without knowing why, until the two centimeter (.79 inch) cue tip emerged -- covered by "unhealthy" tissue that had grown over it.

The mom-of-three's illnesses were traced back to a freak accident she suffered in 1999 in a bar, when a male friend who was holding a pool cue in the crook of his arm gave her a bear hug.

The cue speared the top of her mouth and she was taken to the hospital, but doctors gave her only pain relief.

Had she been X-rayed, it would have shown the tip had come away from the cue and pierced a cheek bone. It worked its way into a sinus before finally moving into a nasal passage.

The former maid, from Broughton, northern England, said it was a "huge shock" when she coughed it out, and she has since had surgery to completely clear her nose.

She said, "I never thought it was anything to do with the accident. In summer I'd write it off as hay fever or being pregnant or just feeling unwell. And in winter I just thought I had flu or a bad cold. It was always one side of my face. My nose was always running or blocked. It felt like a huge build-up of pressure and I could never understand it."

Consultant Mohamed Abbas-Ali, of Scunthorpe Hospital, said, "It's not uncommon for tooth-filling amalgam to lodge in the sinus cavity but it is the first time I have heard of a pool cue tip."

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