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A curious medical story


This story has stayed in my memory for over 30 years, since I read it in (I think) the American Journal of Radiology (sorry, I don't have the reference any more).

A woman had severe headaches and none of the doctors she saw was able to help her. Eventually she could not stand the pain any more and decided to end it by committing suicide. She had a small 0.22 pistol so she put the muzzle in her mouth and pulled the trigger. But the charge was weak and the bullet lodged in the back of her throat without killing her. She now changed her mind about suicide and went back to her doctor, who looked in her throat, saw the base of the bullet, and pulled it out with a pair of forceps. There followed a gush of pus from her sphenoidal sinus (a sinus at the back of the throat), which cured her headache.

Not quite sure what the moral of this story is.

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