5 Body Parts With the Most ER Extractions


Vagina and Rectum

"Every proctologist story ends in the same way: 'It was a million to one shot, doc. Million to one.'"

In a Seinfeld episode called "The Fusilli Jerry," that was Kramer's take on people who inadvertently get objects stuck in their rectums. And it resembled Frank Costanza's reaction when, in that same episode, he landed bottom-first on a pasta figurine. While it's highly unlikely that many (if any) people wind up in the ER with fusilli pasta lodged in their rear ends, it's not that unusual for patients to arrive with other things stuck there.

Often, objects removed from the rectum involve things that were put there as part of a sexual act. Condoms and sex toys (and objects used to replicate sex toys) are top culprits. In women, the vagina is another body cavity where foreign objects sometimes find their way. Not only can the usual suspects, condoms and sex toys, get lost in there, but sometimes tampons and contraceptive devices (like diaphragms) get stuck, too.

A decidedly less sexy -- but more organic -- object that can require removal from the rectum by an ER doctor is stool. People with chronic constipation sometimes suffer from fecal impactment. In these cases, enemas don't always cure the problem, and a doctor must manually break up and remove the stool with his or her fingers.

As you'll also see on the next page, not everything that needs to be taken out of the body is a foreign object.