Doctors pulled a giant hairball from a young girl's stomach after she complained of pains.
Doctors estimated that Miao Miao, 5, had been swallowing her own hair for up to a year, according to WFLD. The hardened mass of hair had taken up about two-thirds of her stomach by the time it was removed. It was causing blockages and pain.
Miao Miao reportedly told her parents she would eat her hair when she couldn't fall asleep during naptime at school. She was diagnosed with allotriophagy, which is similar to pica and causes the patient to crave and consume non-edible substances. Doctors have warned Miao Miao's parents to monitor her behavior more closely.
If left untreated, the condition can cause very serious health problems as the mass of hair continues to get larger. In 2015, an 8-year-old girl in China who couldn't digest any food was taken to the hospital, where doctors discovered a 4.5-pound hairball in her stomach, according to the Daily Mail.
The hairball had been growing for several years and had assumed the exact shape of the girl's stomach, making it impossible for her to digest food. The doctor who operated on her stated that a compulsion to eat foreign objects is usually due to "psychological issues."