Man Discovers Chopsticks in Skull After 5 Months of Headaches

Chopsticks definitely aren’t the most natural thing to find stuck in your head. A Vietnamese man who had been suffering from headaches over the last five months finally learned that a pair of chopsticks stuck in his skull had been the reason behind his discomfort.

The unnamed man was admitted to the Cuba Friendship Hospital in the city of Dong Hoi, Vietnam’s Quang Binh province after he complained about severe headaches, vision loss and fluid discharge coming from his nose. The man didn’t have any logical explanations for the discomfort but a CT scan discovered something bizarre.

The CT scan that was taken by doctors showed a tension pneumocephalus, the intracranial equivalent of a pneumothorax, as well as two foreign objects protruding from his nose into his brain. After a thorough examination, the objects were identified as broken chopsticks.

Initially, the 35-year-old man couldn’t remember how chopsticks found their way into his skull. He later remembered that he had been involved in a physical altercation one night when he was out drinking. He ended up in the emergency room, where doctors just patched him up and sent him home. While he doesn’t actually remember the incident, he assumes the other man stuck the chopsticks into his skull, through the nose.

To remove the broken chopsticks as carefully as possible, the medical team decided to perform endoscopic surgery through the nose, combined with microsurgery to close the patient’s cranial fistula. According to doctor Nguyen Van Man, Head of the Department of Neurosurgery at Cuba Friendship Hospital, choosing the optimal surgical method is critical to avoid leaving the patient with sequelae.

The 35-year-old man was stable after the surgery and he was able to be discharged from the hospital to return home.