A man from China underwent surgery on June 20 to remove 15 sewing needles that he had inserted into his penis.
When the 35-year-old man went to the hospital with pain in his genitals and blood in his urine, he admitted to doctors that he had stuck the needles in his penis about a year ago for sexual gratification. The needles could clearly be seen in X-rays taken of the man's pelvic region.
"Because of the patient’s hobby, he inserted 15 needles from the tip of his penis into his urethra over the course of a year," Dr. Cao Zhiqiang said, according to the Daily Star. "As a result, he suffered from haematuria -- blood in the urine -- infections and it hurt whenever he urinated."
The Daily Mail reports that it took doctors an hour and a half to extract all of the needles from his penis. The needles were between 5 and 10 centimeters in length.
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"I am sweating and my hands are trembling when it's over. This is not an easy one," Dr. Cao said.
And yet it could have been much more complicated had the man not sought medical attention when he did.
"Had we waited longer, the needles might have moved further up into his bladder, which would have been very troublesome."
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The patient is recovering in the hospital and is due to be released in the coming days. He is not expected to suffer any long-term effects.
Dr. Cao described the man's bizarre behavior as a sexual fetish and said other patients have come into the hospital after sticking thermometers and pen refills in their penises.
"There are scholars explaining this scenario as one of the peculiar sex similar to Sadomasochism and foot fetishes," the doctor said. "Patients are looking for excitement through unusual ways."
He added that "special toys" exist for individuals with this particular fetish.
"These specially made tools are not only more hygienic, they are also safer to insert -- and most importantly can be removed," he said.