WARNING: Squeamish readers should be warned the story below contains graphic details.

TORONTO -- A man had 7.6-cm tweezers stuck in his urethra for four long years, according to a case report published in a medical journal that’s recently gone viral.

The 22-year-old, whose name wasn’t revealed, disclosed the issue to doctors when he visited a clinic in Saudi Arabia.

Lead author Dr. Mohamed Abouelazayem, of England’s Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust, described the case in detail in the May issue of the journal Urology Case Reports. But the case report has recently gone viral after being covered by The Daily Mail, The New York Post and HuffPost.

X-rays showed a “long foreign body” lodged in the patient’s anterior urethra -- with the metal forceps embedded into his flesh.

Despite his predicament, the young man told doctors he didn’t have urological issues and could urinate normally. He also didn’t report having fevers or chills.

Once doctors found the tweezers, the patient was taken into an operating room and placed under general anesthesia.

The authors of the report explain that removing the tweezers was a bit tricky because doctors had to keep the forceps closed, so it wouldn’t rip the man’s urethra.

Surgeons managed to kept the tweezers shut by squeezing down on the man’s penis, in something the authors called the “external pressure technique.”


The authors didn’t explain how or why the man lodged the tweezers in his urethra. However they wrote that, in general, “foreign bodies are most commonly inserted into the urinary tract by psychiatric, intoxicated, confused, or sexually curious patients.”

After doctors removed the tweezers, the team recommended to the patient that he see a psychiatrist. But the report said the man refused and avoided visiting the outpatient department altogether.

“In the vast majority of cases, the patients feel guilty and humiliated and, therefore, often delay asking for medical help,” the case report stated.

The authors wrote that “the most common reason for self-insertion of a foreign body into the male urethra is for autoerotic and sexual gratification, especially during masturbation.”

Although this case involving tweezers in a male’s urethra may sound like a unique case in medical history, doctors noted it’s actually “the second time in literature where an open thumb metal forceps (tweezers) is diagnosed.”

The man didn’t report experiencing any inflammatory issues. Last year, the story of an Indian boy went viral after doctors found a pen tip inside his penis that had caused several urinary tract infections.

The authors also explained that cases of people inserting foreign objects into their reproductive organs and the urinary system “defies imagination.” According to the case report, these items have included fish hooks, metal rods, screws, wires, wooden sticks, a piece of fish and even telephone cables.