50cm eel removed from man's rectum

f57a4d0b-0cdc-4068-a2a7-b3f3f1b1bf4a

Editor's Picks
Features Post
What caused this snail die-off?
04 January 2022
Fishkeeping News Post
Nanochromis transvestitus
04 January 2022
Features Post
How do I feed these tricky gobies?
04 January 2022
Features Post
Should I add sand for my Rams?
04 January 2022
Features Post
How to set up your Christmas tank
20 December 2021


Scientists have reported the successful removal of a live 50cm 'eel' from a man's rectum.

According to the paper in the journal Surgery, the 50-year old man was admitted to the Accident and Emergency Department at Kwong Wah Hospital in Kowloon, Hong Kong, suffering abdominal pain. 

Doctors seeing to the patient diagnosed peritonitis and did an x-ray to find out what was wrong. The x-ray revealed the presence of a live 'eel' in the man's rectum. 

"On further questioning," says the paper, "the patient admitted an eel was inserted into the rectum in an attempt to relieve constipation.

"Emergency laparotomy found a 50cm eel biting the splenic flexure of the colon, and a 3cm perforation was found over the anterior wall of the rectum.

"Insertion of a live animal into the rectum causing rectal perforation has never been previously reported. "This may be related to a bizarre healthcare belief, inadvertent sexual behaviour, or criminal assault. However, the true reason may never be known."

The patient was discharged a week later.

This item was first published on the Practical Fishkeeping website on Friday April 24, 2009. It may not be reproduced without written permission.