Man tried to cure constipation by swallowing live eels, wound up in emergency surgery, report says

WARNING: GRAPHIC PHOTOS BELOW

Stick with prune juice, kids.

One man in China found himself on the operating table after he swallowed live eels. He believed that it would help relieve his constipation, only for the sea creatures to tear through his intestines, causing a serious infection.

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The man, who was not identified, was admitted to Jiangsu Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine on Jan. 9, just one day after he tried the do-it-yourself approach, AsiaWire reported. He was complaining of intense abdominal pain, and the staff recognized that his body was going into shock, according to the report.

The man swallowed the eels believing they would cure his constipation. 

The man swallowed the eels believing they would cure his constipation.  (AsiaWire)

A CT scan showed the skeletons of eels in his abdominal cavity, and he was sent in for emergency surgery to remove them.

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“We opened him up and noticed a large amount of fecal water mixed with blood,” Dr. Sun Haijian, deputy head of general surgery at the hospital, said, according to AisaWire. “There was severe swelling and we found two very thick swamp eels at the bottom of his abdominal cavity.”

Surgeons had to open his abdomen and remove the sea creatures after they ate a hole through his intestines and caused a massive infection, which could have killed him.

Surgeons had to open his abdomen and remove the sea creatures after they ate a hole through his intestines and caused a massive infection, which could have killed him. (AsiaWire)

Haijian said they also measured a 2-centimeter hole in his colon, and another in his intestine which required fixing. Haijian said his patient was lucky to have sought medical attention when he did, as a leak in the digestive tract can cause serious infections that are sometimes fatal.

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At least one of the eels removed was still alive, according to the report.