Toddler Survives Freak Accident of Getting Colored Pencil Lodged in Brain

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A toddler who had a color pencil lodged into her eye socket and brain has recovered, after doctors said it miraculously missed all major blood vessels and nerves. 

Olivia Smith, 20 months old, was coloring at home on January 6 when she fell and one of the colored pencils was lodged into her right eye. 

When mother Susie Smith saw the pencil sticking out of her eye, she thought it broke in half. 

"I thought there was no way that whole pencil was through her head," Smith said. 

She was then taken to Boston Children's Hospital where she had X-rays. The results were astonishing. 

Over four inches of the pencil were stuck in her brain, going from her right eye to the back of her skull. Despite it being lodged so far into her brain, it missed every major artery and nerve in its path. 

"The CTA [scan] was probably the most remarkable scan I've ever seen," Dr. Darren Orbach, a neurointerventional radiologist said. 

"If you follow the course of the pencil across the brain, the entire brain, it literally missed every major vessel in its path by millimeters."

Doctors sedated the child and started removing the pencil slowly, by pulling it a few millimeters at a time. 

It took three hours, but they got the pencil out. 

Though Olivia suffered a mild stroke after the pencil pierced her brain, she did not suffer any major brain or eye damage and was likely to make a full recovery. 

Doctors said she might have weakness on the right side of her body, but otherwise she would be completely normal. 

"Maybe she won't be a gymnast, but in every other way, she will be completely normal," Orbach said. 


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