Browse content similar to Episode 10. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
With mind-boggling medical mishaps...
and the quirkiest of casualties...
Boyfriend dropped a turnip on my foot.
..this is Bizarre ER.
And for the first time, we've camped out in not one but two British hospitals,
Northampton General and Bradford Royal Infirmary...
..to bring you the curious cases that are all in a day's work for the stoic staff...
Can you see your pound coin there?
..but which have to be seen to be believed.
Plus, we've scoured the planet for the people who,
thanks to amazing medics, have survived the most extraordinary accidents
and emergencies known to man.
Nobody believes they're going to get the Black Death.
So scrub up, sit back and enjoy the sometimes silly, often odd, but never dull world of Bizarre ER.
-All I can say is thank heavens for the NHS.
# Bringin' out the best in you. #
Coming up - a Bradford granny's Tasered by her own toaster...
I think what saved me was the fact that I had leather shoes on with rubber soles.
..Bonfire Night ends early for the boy who ate his own sparkler.
Chewed it and swallowed it.
..and the curious tale of how an artist survived
being skewered by a two-metre metal rod, when she impaled herself on her own sculpture.
When I went to introduce myself to Sophia, I said, "Hi, I'm Jules, I'm a... Whoa!"
But first we're heading to Northampton General, which sees its fair share of sporting injuries.
-But when it comes to freaky football foul-ups, our next case is in the Premier League.
Dean Taylor's arrived in A & E with his right ankle at a right angle,
after an awkward tackle just five minutes into a Sunday League cup match.
-I told the ambulance, "Just pop it back in and I'll carry on."
Luckily for Dean, the medics can ease his suffering, but with a very peculiar kind of pain relief.
It's the medicine that will make you feel sleepy.
As well as morphine, Dean's being given midazolam,
which doesn't stop him feeling pain but helps him forget it.
It sedates him to the point that he can't remember stuff,
but he's still going to have a response to the pain
of what we're doing, but he's just not going to remember it.
Dean's broken his tibia and fibula bones,
but as well as bones, the break will affect nerves and blood vessels.
If medics don't crank the ankle back into place quickly, Dean could lose his foot.
Here we go.
DEAN YELLS Well done.
Well done, that's it. It's all done!
-You did really well.
-Well done, Dean, the worst bit's over now.
-Just putting a plaster on, then you'll be really comfortable.
Dean's best foot is once again forward, but bizarrely,
-due to the drugs, he has no memory of the manoeuvre.
-Have I been to sleep already?
You have. It's all been done.
-OK, I'll come and talk to you later.
-Have I really been to sleep?
-Yes, they done it before we got here.
Straightened your ankle up.
Well, I didn't know that.
He might have a memory like a goldfish right now,
but Dean still recognises mum Belinda by her soothing bedside manner(!)
One way of getting out of work, isn't it, son?
Having straightened Dean out, Dr Pearce now needs to see
exactly what damage has been done to the tibia and fibula.
His ankle is broken in two places across here and up here as well,
and this is his tibia bone and the bone is broken across here.
To fix these bones, it ought to have a plate on this bone and a screw on this bone
to stop his ankle from moving whilst it heals.
So our Sunday League star needs surgery, but he'll have to wait for
-the swelling to subside before his ankle goes under the knife.
The family call full-time on today, and Dean gets some well-earned rest.
The next day, the nasty fracture is still too swollen for surgery.
Whenever anything breaks, it swells up.
Your skin becomes like an over-ripe tomato.
It's all right if you don't touch it,
but if you do, it'll split open and then you can't sew it back again.
With play delayed yet again, Dean settles in for another night on the ward.
A full five days into extra time, the leg still isn't match-fit.
Dean's initial cast has also become uncomfortable,
so he's been wheeled off to be put into some new team colours.
I desperately need a shower, and the nurses said they'll only give me one
if I change the colour to pink, so that's what I'm going to do.
Excuse my fingers.
They could have gone in worse places!
After a few days on the ward, there's clearly nothing wrong with Dean's funny bone.
Oh, Dean, that is definitely a red-card offence!
While Dean's so far been doing a good job of keepie-uppie with his spirits,
the long wait for surgery is starting to dampen his mood.
I'm very bored. Very bored.
It's not just the boredom crippling Dean.
The longer surgery's delayed, the greater the chance of complications,
and Dean's worried what this injury means for his footballing future.
He lives for his football, and for him not to actually play football...
well, he might as well give up.
Join us later in the show, when we'll find out if Dean makes it to surgery
and discover if staff can ensure he'll once again be able to play for his beloved Kislingbury FC.
Next, we're heading to Bradford Royal Infirmary, where it's Bonfire Night.
But the Wilson family have had to cut short their celebrations, after little Jacob
turned his nose up at the usual treats and chose to chow down on a sparkler.
Chewed it and swallowed it.
It wasn't lit, thankfully.
We'd not managed to light them with the wind,
so he was keeping hold of it so we could light it later.
-But then he decided to eat it instead.
Although he's all smiles now, Jacob's bizarre bite to eat
could cause serious complications, so he's rushed in to see Dr Bell.
-What time was that roughly, do you know?
-I think it was about...
just about eight.
And how's he been since then?
He seems absolutely fine.
He has said a couple of times that his tummy's hurting him.
After picking over Jacob's potentially-lethal leftovers,
Dr Bell needs to check that there are no abnormalities to his internal organs.
The poor wee firecracker is clearly uncomfortable, and his tummy ache
could be a symptom of something much more serious.
So Jacob's sent up to the children's ward, where he'll be put under the care of Dr Singh Hunjan.
One of the things we worry about with fireworks,
or any kind of ingestion of fireworks,
is there's a chemical called barium nitrate that's in them,
and in very severe cases, it can affect your breathing
and paralyse your muscles, and one other thing we worry about
is it can bring your potassium level very low,
and that can cause problems with the heart.
It could take hours for problems to flare up, so while tonnes of
the toxic barium nitrate safely go up in smoke outside, Jacob's kept in hospital overnight for observation.
He's in safe hands, but Mum and Dad will have a nervous night ahead.
The following morning, much to Mum's relief, Jacob's sparkler snack seems to be a bit of a damp squib.
I think they came in every couple of hours, so they kept a good eye on him all night.
Dr Singh Hunjan pops in for a final check-up.
Can I have a little feel of your tummy, and then do you want to go home? What do you reckon?
Can you tell me what you had for your breakfast today?
-Toast. Now shall I see if I can find this toast in here somewhere?
Let me have a little feel. Ah, there might be a little bit of jam.
-Feel the sparkler.
-Shall I have a listen? I want to be able to hear that sparkler going off!
Oh, no, I think it's gone. I don't think it's there.
That's really good, isn't it?
-He's fine. I think we should get you off. Is that OK?
-That sounds like a good plan.
-Right. We'll leave you guys to it.
-Thanks very much.
None the worse for his ordeal, Jacob heads home, where mum will be making sure
that the only snap, crackle and pop he'll be munching on from now on will be at the breakfast table.
Our next patient tonight has come to A & E after a quirky kitchen calamity.
Gloria Declare's arrived stunned, but lucky to be alive, after she was electrocuted by her own toaster.
I was very lucky. I think what was saved me
was the fact that I have leather shoes on with rubber soles.
Gloria had just got home from bingo and was feeling a little peckish.
All the threes, pancakes for tea.
She decided to pop some pancakes into the toaster,
but events took a shocking turn when Gloria pressed the lever.
A blue flash sparked and, faster than she could shout, "House,"
she was thrown across the kitchen.
Dazed but not fazed by the snack attack, Gloria had another go, with an unsurprisingly similar outcome.
# Can I be electric too? #
Staff's main concern is for Gloria's heart, which has been set racing
by the treacherous toaster.
If someone's had an adequately enough shock,
then potentially, it can knock your heart
into a what we call a ventricular fibrillation,
which is like a load of worms in a bag, that, like, your heart's literally doing this.
Death can occur if it's not dealt with quick enough.
-As if Gloria hadn't had enough of bread-related run-ins, Dr Baker pops up...
..and gets right to the heart of the matter.
We've given you a good check over, and your heart tracing and ECG
-that we did is normal, and so I think we can give you a clear bill of health, really, from this.
But before he can discharge her, Dr Baker wants to check that Gloria hasn't fried her fingers.
-Got any burns on there at all?
-Or toasted her tootsies.
When electricity passes through the body, it can cause burns at the entry and exit points.
-I think we can let you go home.
-With the all-clear,
-Gloria can head home, but will those pancakes still be waiting for her?
-Oh, I've eaten them.
I had the sense to eat them.
-And dinner tonight?
-Nothing toasted, that's for sure!
No doubt she'll be heading home for a nice cup of cocoa to toast her good health.
Time now to enter the Bizarre ER confessional.
We've invited medics from across the land to share the funniest
and freakiest things they've seen in A & E.
These stories might sound far-fetched, but they're all 100% true.
A gentleman attended who apparently had some delicate baubles on his Christmas tree, which had fallen off,
and he didn't want these delicate baubles to get broken, so he thought it would be a good idea
to put them on the mattress on his bed next to him, for safekeeping of course, as we all would.
Unfortunately, during the middle of the night he happened to roll over onto said baubles,
which unfortunately somehow ended up lodged in his rectum.
So we had him X-rayed and it was very festive, lots of baubles
lodged in the rectum, which obviously had to be removed.
It can happen to you even when you're off duty.
I was down a local pub watching a jazz band.
They got a fella out of the audience, a sprightly 70-year-old, to join the band.
He starts singing that fateful song, "I've Got A Whole Lot Of Living To Do."
He does the first verse brilliantly, he starts the second verse, he drops dead.
His head hits my table as he falls.
Couldn't find a better fella to fall dead in front of.
Got up, gave him cardiopulmonary resuscitation, ambulance arrives, couple of shocks, heart started.
He's had his coronary artery bypass grafting, his defibrillator's in, and believe it or not, he's back singing.
We're back at Northampton General, where, along with
the smell of disinfectant, there's romance in the air.
But the course of true love has not run smoothly for poor Oriel Jackson.
She's arrived at A & E after a romantic encounter
ended not with a candlelit supper, but with a diced digit.
Started gushing out with big droplets of blood and went everywhere,
all over the cream carpets.
Oriel was at college, minding her own business, chomping chips, when she noticed she was being watched.
What's your problem, then?
Smitten by the sight of Oriel eating chips,
the love-struck stranger approached
and asked her what her favourite flowers were.
-What's your favourite flowers?
Just moments later, the mysterious stranger was back with a bunch of lilies.
Thanks, see ya later.
Overwhelmed by the romantic gesture, Oriel headed home to arrange her bouquet.
Once there, she ended up taking a kitchen knife to her finger as well as the flowers.
Never one to overreact, Oriel screamed.
Ahhh, I'm dying!
Prompting her brother, who'd not quite grasped
that this wasn't a real life-or-death emergency, to call for an ambulance.
I'm dying! I'm dying!
I sat there screaming "I'm dying" for about 20 minutes, half an hour maybe.
If I do die, my hair's curly and my nails are done, so I should be all right.
On hand to ensure that Oriel won't be dying in the cause of love is Nurse Maria Katlin...
Let's have a look at your hand.
..who gets a good look at Oriel's impressive talons.
They're beautiful nails.
-Are they yours?
-Oh, all right, then.
..before inspecting the gash.
Luckily, Oriel hasn't sliced to the bone, so she won't need surgery to fix the finger.
-But there's still the risk of infection getting into the wound or the bloodstream.
-It's really sore.
-So Nurse Maria first cleans out the cut with saline solution.
-It shouldn't sting.
-Before binding the wound using a Steri-strip.
With no stitches, there's less chance of scarring and Oriel won't need to come back to A & E.
I'm just going to press gently.
Relieved to learn that her love wound isn't fatal, Oriel's mind moves onto more pressing matters.
-Can I get my nails done tomorrow?
-Is that what you're worried about?
Just want to get my nails done.
Yes, you can get your nails done.
Unsurprisingly, she took the bouquet blunder as a sign that her mystery admirer wasn't Mr Right.
-You're very welcome.
So while Oriel survived her trip to A & E, the fledgling romance was dead on arrival.
Let's hope it hasn't put Oriel off love for life.
Love is the most dangerous game to play.
Don't play with it. It's not funny.
Bizarre accidents aren't confined to Northampton.
Across the UK, casualty departments are crammed with weird wounds and unusual ailments.
Medics in Gloucestershire were confronted with a decidedly odd emergency
when they went to the rescue of a woman who turned trauma into a fine art
when she was skewered on her own sculpture.
Squeamish viewers be warned -
this story contains some gory images from the start.
Most creators will suffer for their art, but none so much as Sophia Hughes,
who fell and impaled herself on one of her very own creations.
Sophia has been making art for 30 years.
She first started in pottery, but now makes large sculptures using steel, wood and glass.
I'm just used to looking at things, and I want to express it.
This day in her home studio started just like any other.
I'd got the radio on.
-'Welcome to Kent and to Sandringham, which was a medieval court.'
It had just got onto Any Questions?
I was up the ladder, which I'd been up hundreds of times before.
But this day would end like no other before.
At the foot of the ladder was a new sculpture called The Song of Experience.
It was big, heavy and featured eight razor-sharp steel rods.
I felt the ladder slide a bit from under me...
...and then I tried to work out why my arm was stuck in the air.
A knife-like steel rod plunged into her, skewering her from armpit to hand.
The rod exited by her knuckles, extending an astonishing two feet
past the end of her arm, leaving her like Wolverine.
That's when I started taking deep breaths.
This was very, very serious.
Strangely, three days earlier, while meditating, Sophia had had an odd premonition.
I became aware that something absolutely life-changing was coming.
I was very scared.
The huge metal rod impaled in her arm was very much a reality.
It was also still attached to the massive sculpture.
She lay helpless, trapped.
Sophia contemplated sliding her arm off the pole.
The pain would have had me pass out before I'd got even
a quarter of the way there, so I knew that wasn't possible.
Shouting for help would have been a precious waste of energy.
-Sophia had only one choice.
-I've got to cut it.
But what with?
With pain searing through her arm, she reached for a file.
I realised I was getting nowhere.
Not giving up, Sophia was able to use a spirit level
to try and reach her bolt cutters, but even they proved futile.
-I couldn't do it.
-Things were getting desperate.
Her mind would have to be stronger than steel.
In the distance, a very small-looking saw lay on the ground.
Sophia's last hope.
Gritting her teeth, she began to cut...
'I think it's about time we had another prime minister.'
..each movement of the blade excruciating.
'This needs change...
There were very, very fine metal shards, like a dusting
of metal powder, and so I knew I was getting somewhere.
'The tragedy is...'
A desperate Sophia tried to break the rod.
It did absolutely nothing, and that was awful.
It had been an agonising 50 minutes since the fall.
Finally, she managed to cut through the rod.
it was such a quiet moment.
I just suddenly discovered I was free.
And then I realised that they'd moved on to Any Answers?
'Time now on Radio 4 for Any Answers? Your chance to phone...'
-Sophia began the small but painful journey to the phone.
-Out came this whisper.
Suddenly, I was really seriously in danger of passing out.
A rapid-response vehicle arrived in minutes.
I went to introduce myself to Sophia.
I said "Hi, I'm Jules, I'm a... Whoa!"
It's amazing, it had actually missed a lot of the arteries and major blood vessels.
Potentially could have lost quite a lot of blood and gone into shock.
It can be very damaging. You can die from it.
Now the difficult task was how to get Sophia to hospital.
We decided to go in on blue lights, but very, very carefully and very, very steadily.
We walked into hospital with her arm up like this.
Everybody was looking where she was pointing!
In hospital, Sophia had some very unusual visitors.
Five firefighters and myself around near the bed.
-And they'd come to cut the other end off, the end that stuck out.
-The hacksaw was the tool of choice.
Poor guy cutting was being teased, especially when the saw got stuck.
At one stage, she gave us some helpful hints.
With the sharp edges gone, thanks to the fire department, it was safe for doctors
to figure out just how to get the metal rod out of Sophia's arm.
We were wondering a little whether it might be able to slide out
the way it had come in,
but it was readily apparent it wasn't going to do that.
The solution was simple, but squeamish viewers be warned...
it wasn't pretty.
Doctors opened the limb, slicing down the entire length of the arm.
We cut from the entry point, all the way down.
Just basically followed the rod.
The main thing we were concerned about was infection.
It was not just a rod, but it had been wrapped with copper wire that had been purposely corroded by her.
After the rod was removed, the wound was left open for two-and-a-half days
so doctors could be sure there was no infection.
It took 66 stitches to put Sophia's arm back together.
Amazingly, the rod had missed all her tendons, and Sophia still has full use of her arm and hand.
Five inches to the left, and I'd have impaled the whole of myself and I'd have died.
I feel as though this is the beginning of rethinking the way I live
and I'm enjoying it. It's great.
The art world may seem refined, but easels can be evil,
and even chisels can land you in the shizzle.
Poisonous palettes are one of the main problems, and Danish specialists
have identified a neurological condition brought on by long-term exposure to paint solvents...
It's thought that, down the ages, lead and other toxins in paint
are behind the famed artistic temperament,
-What's your problem?
..irritability and odd behaviour in the likes of Van Gogh and Michelangelo.
I'll have your ear off next time!
Even if paint doesn't pain you,
there are plenty of other bizarre ways to make suffering a fine art.
British artist Mark McGowan cut short his attempt to remain
buried up to his neck on Margate beach for 48 hours
after seagulls started to dive-bomb at his head.
And Belgrade-born performance artist Marina Abramovic nearly went down in flames
after leaping into the centre of a giant burning wooden star
from which fire had sucked all the oxygen.
Collectors should note the value of her work didn't increase overnight,
as the stunt fortunately proved far from fatal.
Gallery-goers, as well as artists, risk life and limb,
such as the British tourists who,
while taking in the culture at a French chateau in Moulidars,
was savaged by a swarm of bees.
Or the casualties of Carsten Holler's Test Site.
This infamous installation of steel slides at Tate Modern
left three people with injured fingers
and one with a broken wrist.
Art. It's an ugly business.
Earlier in the show, we met Dean Taylor, who arrived at Northampton General A & E with a wonky ankle,
after spectacularly bending it like Beckham.
Dean's faced an agonising wait
for the swelling to subside so that surgeons could fix his fractures.
Incredibly, it's now been ten days, and Dean still hasn't had surgery.
He's hoping today will be his lucky day.
OK, so the swelling's gone down enough that we can do the operation.
-You shall go to the ball. You can go home.
-Yeah, that's fine.
Be glad to get this out the way, won't you?
With Dean under general anaesthetic, Mr Stock and his team are ready for kick-off.
Squeamish viewers who don't want to know the results of tonight's match should look away now.
MUSIC: Theme from Match Of The Day
Mr Stock begins by opening up the leg, revealing Dean's broken bones.
Hopefully it should fit together a bit like a jigsaw puzzle.
Dean's breaks are so serious, a series of screws and plates
are needed to help his ankle knit back together.
So this is just sterile carpentry really, with respect to Dean.
This is a screw going in, grips the far side, and as it engages,
it pulls them together. So I should be able to take this off and it'll hold it.
More screws are brought on to stabilise the tibia,
and a plate is then added to the fibula to beef up the defence.
As well as bones, Dean's also damaged a ligament,
and to compensate for that he'll need a different bit of kit.
You need the bones to heal together to move properly.
At the moment, they're damaged, so they're moving too much,
so we use this thing called a tightrope, which is a strong, wire-like structure.
The tightrope wire is threaded through the two bones.
Toggles at each end anchor it firmly in place once it's tied off by the surgeon.
And there you are. Beforehand, when I pulled, it moved up in here.
It's not moving now.
With the final whistle not far off, Mr Stock moves into the closing stages of Dean's op.
So all we've got to do now is to close over the skin, and you can see it's relatively tight now.
If we'd tried if when it was very swollen in the early days,
-we wouldn't have got it back together again.
-And with the would sewn up, it's full-time.
We'll check his wounds tomorrow. All being well,
put him into a full plaster and he'll be home in a few days' time.
He's a young, fit man, so he'll be all right on crutches.
Back up on the ward, Mum's ready and waiting for some post-match analysis.
Just come to see Dean. Very groggy, very grumpy, I'd say.
I think he really wants a good night's sleep, so hopefully today's morphine will do the job for him.
As Dean gets back in the game, there's just one thing on his mind...tonight's Man United match.
If I'm not awake at 7.45 tonight I will not be happy.
For us, as a family, it's such a relief.
Hopefully, by the end of the year, he'll be back playing football.
It'll be around six months before Dean's back on the road to Sunday League glory.
For now, his family are just glad that he's coming home.
# It's coming home, it's coming... #
As Dean's story comes to a close, so does this series.
Dean's the last in a long line of casualties
who've been patched up and put back together by the staff at our two hospitals.
So while we're away, remember - however bizarre your blunder,
-whatever the time of day...
..the doctors and nurses of Britain will be there to make it all better.
Thanks very much, everybody. See you later!
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Featuring a family who cut their Bonfire Night celebrations short when their youngest son ate a sparkler; a Bradford granny who was electrocuted by her own toaster; a Sunday league soccer player whose awkward tackle left him with a broken ankle; and a student who sliced her finger when she cut open a bouquet given to her by a mystery admirer.
Plus, surgeons contend with an artist whose arm was skewered by a two-metre rod when she impaled herself on her own sculpture.