Posted on Jan 16, 2014

Numerous people are often shocked to find random instruments left in their body after a procedure. One woman was particularly shocked after one hundred little items were found in her.

Fox news reports on the shocking discovery.

“When doctors examined an X-ray image of the knees of a woman experiencing severe joint pain, they found a gold mine: hundreds of tiny gold acupuncture needles left in her tissue,” according to Fox.  

The woman had gone for the acupuncture treatment to help with her joint pain.

Fox explains, “The 65-year-old South Korean woman had previously been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, a condition in which the cartilage and bones within the joints degrade, causing pain and stiffness. But when pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs didn't alleviate the pain in her knees and only caused stomach discomfort, she had turned to acupuncture.”

“Acupuncture is an alternative medical practice that uses needles to purportedly stimulate certain points on the body, to alleviate pain or to treat various diseases. In the woman's acupuncture treatment, the needles, which were presumably made of gold, were intentionally left in her tissue for continued stimulation.”

But leaving the needles in is not always a smart plan.

One doctor from Boston University told Fox, “Leaving the needles, or any objects, in the body may not be such a good idea. Foreign objects left inside the body can lead to inflammation, abscesses and infection. It could also make it hard for a doctor to read an X-ray. The needles may obscure some of the anatomy. The human body wants to get rid of the foreign object. It starts with some mechanism of defense, for example inflammation and forming [fibrous tissue] around the object. Needles left in the body can cause other challenges, too. The patient can't go into an MRI because needles left in the body may move, and damage an artery. Little evidence supports the idea that treating medical conditions with acupuncture actually works.”

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Gerry Oginski
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NY Medical Malpractice & Personal Injury Trial Lawyer