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With mind boggling medical mishaps...
and the quirkiest of casualties.
My 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 hospitals -
Northampton General and Bradford Royal Infirmary.
PHONE RINGS Hello.
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.
Coming up... a biking blunder causes one man's metalwork to make a bid for freedom.
It's punching through the end there. It's not great.
A freaky forest accident leaves a woodsman with a wrecked wrist.
I've seen it once... it looked bad enough.
And a story of how two Norwegian adventurers' Arctic expedition turned to terror when they were
attacked in their sleep by a deadly polar bear.
Polar bears are strong animals, it can take just seconds to kill a person.
But first we're heading for Northampton where young thrill seeker Luke
has arrived at A&E with his face in a state after being injured in a bizarre trolley dash.
Not knowing you can fall off an old granny trolley.
Luke was building a go-kart with his friends, but their makeshift machine
was little more than a chair attached to a skateboard.
Boys being boys they were on the hunt for material to make the king of home-made carts.
By chance a kind old lady offered up her old shopping trolley for parts.
The mini mechanics leapt at the chance to pimp their ride.
Hey boys, how about this for a real set of wheels?
Daring Luke decided to take the trolley for a spin
before they took it apart, but it was a descent of doom.
As he was speeding down the slope the handle came free,
Luke fell forward hitting his lip on the metal pole
where the handle should be, leaving him and the trolley in pieces.
Boys will be boys,
but I don't understand why he tried
to ride the blasted thing. I really don't understand that.
Alert viewers may have spotted that Luke's also red around the eyes.
but those pink peepers aren't due to the crash.
Bizarrely they're the product of a friend's felt tip.
My mate drew on me last night.
Probably not much medics can do with the weird eye dye...
Let's crack on and do this.
But nurse Simon's wheeled in to repair Luke's lip.
-You need to be brave, all right?
-Simon gets straight to work.
It'll make his eyes water. Ready?
He numbs the area with an injection...
-Might make your nose go numb as well.
-..Before giving the wound a wash.
And then sets about stitching up our junior speed freak.
Makes it a bit easier that he hasn't started shaving yet cos the stubble gets in the way.
Three stitches later and Simon's job's done.
So not the most enjoyable pit stop for our fearless trolley jockey,
but at least he only escaped with a minor prang.
Now he'll have a scar for the rest of his life for a silly little thing
so he felt a bit sorry for himself.
Time for the family to head home, but Dad suspects it won't be long
before our budding Lewis Hamilton is back in A&E.
You just never know with him... he's one of those accident prone boys.
He can go out and come back with a smile or he can come back with
his head or his lip or his arm gashed open. I shall probably keep him in for the next two days.
Let's hope Luke's getting a lift home from Dad rather than riding that trolley home.
Next we're heading to Bradford, which has been a scene of a dogfight
and one that Andrew Stocking seems to have lost.
Bizarrely and embarrassingly for Andrew, he's not been savaged by his best mate's Rottweiler,
but by a somewhat less menacing mutt.
A fluffy, curly haired terrier thing bit me.
I'm a bit gutted to be honest with you, cos I would rather have been
bitten by a Rottweiler so I had a story to tell rather than some pooch thing no bigger than my shin.
Andrew's problem began in the park when best mate Sinead's colossal canine Delta
attracted the unwanted attention of a tiny but terrifying terrier.
Andrew stepped in to pick up the pint sized pooch only for Delta
to belatedly locate her inner Rottweiler and nip at the terrier's tail.
In return the yappy little Yorkie decided to take a chunk out of Andrew's arm.
Taking the lead in treating Andrew is Bradford Royal Infirmary's
very own little terrier, nurse practitioner May Ureeta.
I might be small, but watch me, I can be feisty. I'm terrible.
Let's just take a look at your arm.
The doggy denture marks may not look deep but they could be hiding damage to nerves and tendons.
Make a fist. Straighten them again.
So May first checks Andrew's not lost any function in his hand and fingers.
Any pain here? Any pain there?
-Yeah, that hurts.
Although it's not just the potential nerve damage bothering May.
Those need cleaning.
-I know, I know.
-Andrew, you dirty little pup.
Straighten all those fingers.
The worst scenario is really getting infection
on the bone itself. I don't think this happens in this case.
As you can see as I'm trying to squash the bones inside and he's not got pain in it.
So the tiny terror hasn't caused any lasting damage but dogs have
got filthy mouths packed full of disease-causing bacteria.
And May wants to ensure Andrew hasn't picked up any nasty infections.
I don't think he's going to be lucky cos he will be needing some injection for tetanus.
So I need to stab you in the shoulder.
I don't really like needles, to be honest with you.
It's Andrew's second run-in of the day with a small feisty character.
-And he's not winning this one either.
It just leaves his wound to be cleaned and dressed,
so nurse Rachel Naylor washes the wound thoroughly, applies an antiseptic strip
to combat any bacteria and gives Andrew instructions to come back if there's any sign of infection.
He's also learnt a valuable lesson.
I'll start running from all the little poodles now instead
of the big pit bulls and stuff coming running towards me.
Sounds a bit barking to me, Andrew.
Man's best friend can, it turns out, also be his worst enemy.
A shocking 100 people a week were admitted to A&E after being mauled,
maimed or munched on by a mutt.
But these doggy disasters can be avoided if you know how.
Signs that Fido's about to go loco include...
When confronted with a mad mongrel, don't panic as flailing limbs are
the first thing a peeved pooch will pounce on.
Instead, put your hands in your pockets,
avoid eye contact, and back off slowly without any sudden movements.
If you are unlucky enough to have a canine clamp onto you,
then don't try to pull away as this could tear the flesh.
But hounds can help as well as harm and some experts think that canines can sniff out tumours.
Cancer cells create chemicals called Volatile Organic Compounds and it's thought that these give
off a distinctive odour that dogs can detect.
Maureen Burns is convinced her collie cross Max saved her life
after he became mopey and began sniffing at her breath and nudging her right breast.
As a result she spotted a suspicious lump and doctors could act quickly to remove her breast cancer ensuring
that Maureen and Max will be going walkies for many more years to come.
Next we're heading back to Northampton General where
A&E is about to be turned into a bloody hell following the arrival of countryside ranger Matty Jones.
Our ranger's in danger as he's ripped open his wrist
after his arm was pulled into the path of his own billhook.
-I don't want to see this.
-Ah, you're OK.
I've seen it once, it looked bad enough.
It's easily the bloodiest wound we've ever featured on Bizarre ER.
So if you're not a fan of the red stuff, look away now.
Staff need to risk removing the dressing to get a good look at the gushing gash.
OK, that's still bleeding a little bit.
We did a good job stopping that.
Come on, get that on there.
It's going...the artery.
Just have a little... Nearly got you.
Put your hand up there.
Right, I'll just hold it up there and press on it.
A billhook is an 8-inch steel blade, a bit like a machete.
Doctors are worried that Matty's mishap with the machete has cut through tendons which could
lead to loss of function in the hand and fingers.
Dr Ejiro steps in to assess the damage.
What was that?
-Just releasing that made it hurt.
-Move your fingers again.
That's fine. I was waiting for some visors, did that squirt in any direction?
Eyes now protected from the spurting blood, Dr Ejiro goes in for a closer look.
Oh, that's the inside of my body.
She's spotted what's getting Matty's red juices flowing, a severed artery inside the wrist.
So we can actually see the artery that's been cut,
the end of it, the white thing, it just needs to be cleaned out
properly because there's a blood clot in there.
That's not your flesh, that's just a blood clot.
Matty's given a local anaesthetic to ease the pain but this is only the start of his treatment.
The average heart pumps around five litres of blood per minute.
With all that claret flooding his arteries it's crucial that surgeons
patch up Matty's painful pruning so he's rushed to theatre...
After a general anaesthetic Matty's wheeled in
and his wrecked wrist is prepared with an antiseptic iodine solution.
This might be a good moment for more squeamish viewers
to pop out and put the kettle on as Matty's operation involves some pretty gory procedures.
Surgeons start by widening the wound
so they can get better access to the nerves, veins and tendons in the wrist.
One of the tendons has been partially severed and unless it's
successfully repaired, Matty could lose the use of some of his hand.
The tendon is carefully stitched back together before attention turns to the severed artery.
Incredibly, using a thread finer than a human hair surgeons are able to sew the two
ends of the artery back together and before long the pulse in his wrist is back in action.
All that remains is for the muscle and skin to be stitched back
together before our woodsman is roused.
Hello, Matty, open your mouth wide for me, open your mouth wide.
And wheeled off to recover.
Seven weeks later and our wounded woodsman's checking in for a check up.
It's healed really well and your movement is terrific so you're very lucky.
It's all gone well really.
You'll always have a bit of a scar there, you'll have to make up a dramatic story for how you got it.
I think the real one's quite dramatic.
I'll say we took on a bear, shoved my hand in its mouth.
-Saved a kitten.
-Yeah, that's it.
With his wrist healing nicely, and physio going well,
-Matty should be back whacking at the wood within the week.
Matty should be fine.
I think he'll go back completely to normal and he'll just have a scar
to remind him to be a bit careful with bill hooks in future.
Looks like everything will be rosy for our countryside ranger.
Well, you might expect a tree surgeon to come a cropper with his chopper.
If you go down to the woods today you too could
become one of the 19,000 people sent to triage by trees each year.
A mistake made by many is sheltering under a tree during a storm,
which can prove fatal as it can act as a conductor for lightning.
Being cosseted in your car won't offer total protection either,
as whole trees have a nasty habit of falling on cars during high winds.
Yeah, hi, Mum, you know you said I could use the car...
And even if you dodge a tumbling trunk you may still fall foul of a nasty branch like Michelle Childers
who thankfully survived being impaled on a 13-inch branch whilst cruising in her car.
It's not just forest giants who could have you leaving the copse as a corpse.
As there are poisonous plants a-plenty.
Laburnum can be lethal, Yew berries might spell the end of you
and just a nibble on Foxglove can lead to diarrhoea,
delirium and death.
Even seeds can cause calamity, just ask Russian Artyom Sidorkin who
needed tree surgery when his lungs sprouted leaves after he unknowingly swallowed a fir tree seed.
As we say in Russia... no need for Christmas tree.
But plant perils aren't confined to the great outdoors
and you can be floored by flora in the most unlikely of places.
Milton Keynes maintenance man Carl Woodridge was pruning a 30 foot cactus in a shopping centre
when the plant sprayed toxic sap
onto his face, causing blistering and temporary blindness.
Where's the cactus, where's the cactus? There.
But the most hazardous herb is tobacco.
Not only does it endanger drivers who try to light a crafty fag while behind the wheel and injure
sweater lovers so eager to get into their new jummy that they pull it on with a lit cigarette in their mouth.
Ah, have you still got the receipt?
Tobacco also kills one person every six seconds,
making this lowly weed the deadliest plant on the planet.
Bizarre cases aren't just confined to Britain
and this series we've scoured the globe to bring you the world's most extraordinary emergencies.
Far north in the Arctic Circle, what was meant to be the trip
of a lifetime for one adventurer became a desperate fight for life
when he was dragged from his tent by the skull crushing jaws of a bloodthirsty bear.
Norwegian childhood chums Sebastian and Ludwig
were planning their dream expedition to be the first ever to kayak around the remote island of Svalbard.
But their dream turned into a Nordic nightmare when they were attacked
by the largest land predator on earth - a polar bear.
Sebastian an Ludwig had been on many adventures together - this though would be their most ambitious.
Svalbard is located in the Arctic about halfway between Norway and the North Pole.
The island is not only home to the most breathtaking views on
the planet but also to 3,000 deadly polar bears.
Polar bears are strong animals,
There is no doubt about the strength of this king of the Arctic.
With paws up to 12 inches across and canine teeth a massive 10cm long,
these fearsome predators often kill by crushing the skull.
They go for the neck and the head.
It can take seconds just to kill a person.
Our adventurers knew the dangers, though, and had come prepared.
They were carrying rifles and would set up a trip wire system which meant that if a bear wandered
into their camp flares would be set off alerting our explorers.
Having kayaked through the night the lads settled down for some
well-earned rest feeling safe behind their fortress of flares and wire.
But they weren't as well protected as they hoped.
While the boys slept, the Arctic's most ferocious predator crept towards their tent.
Against all the odds the lumbering beast unwittingly dodged the trip wire
and this bear was all set for its picnic.
The next thing I remember was Sebastian screaming.
He grabbed my head and he dragged me out of the tent.
The bear dragged Sebastian 30 metres from the campsite literally by the scruff of his neck.
By sod's law setting off two flares on his way out.
He tried to crush my head and he shook me side to side.
The bear was trying to crush Sebastian's skull.
So very painful when he bit really hard.
The 42 razor-sharp teeth sank deeper into his neck.
He was alive but in agony.
As Ludwig grabbed his rifle, the bear reared up onto his hind legs
to its full three metres with Sebastian in its jaws.
Ludwig took aim knowing that he had to bring the bear down
but also aware that a poor shot could kill his best friend.
Thankfully Ludwig's aim was good,
the bear dropped Sebastian and after four more shots
the creature was dead.
This footage shot at the time shows the scene of devastation
while a badly bleeding Sebastian only just made it back to the tent.
The danger was far from over and with Sebastian struggling to stay alive Ludwig made a Mayday call.
In such a remote location it could take up to four hours for help to
arrive and with the scent of human blood acting as an open invitation
to other hungry bears in the neighbourhood, it was a race against time to secure both boys' safety.
I have only heard of one person who was attacked and still is alive.
I thought he might be skinned and badly bitten.
I ran into the tent. He was in a lot of pain.
I moved him as quickly as we could inside the helicopter.
Finally, Sebastian was on his way to hospital but his ordeal wasn't over.
He'd lost a lot of blood and his body was in shock.
At the hospital Dr Kari Hansen was preparing to save Sebastian's life.
He might have had internal injuries to the head because he had bites
in the head 10-15 cm all the way to the skull.
The wounds in his shoulder they were pretty deep, there would
be a lot of damage inside and it might have punctured his lung.
X-rays revealed that Sebastian had been incredibly lucky.
His head and lungs were OK, but the huge flesh wounds were just as worrying as the bear's
germ-packed jaws could have left him with a deadly infection.
There will always be a lot of bacterias in the wound
but we didn't know if this bear attacked because it was hungry or if it was because he had rabies.
Dr Kari had to work rapidly as rabies, if not identified
and treated quickly, causes a slow and painful death.
Sebastian was put to sleep and operated on so that doctors could
clean and cut away any potentially infected skin and muscle.
We had to remove all tissue that might be infected and that turned out to be a good deal, actually,
because the injuries to the muscles, injuries to the tendons, they were much larger than we anticipated.
Thanks to the skilful surgeons and his best friend's quick
and courageous actions, Sebastian emerged from surgery relatively unscathed.
If the polar bear had some more time to actually try to kill him he would have killed him easily.
He really was lucky.
After six days in hospital a sore but amazingly alive and fully functioning Sebastian was released.
This accident won't stop us from going trips together because accidents can happen.
My friend saved my life.
We're always on the look out for weird wounds on Bizarre ER.
And this next one in Northampton has been served to us on a plate...
a metal plate to be precise.
Five months earlier, after a mountain bike mishap, Edward
broke his collarbone and a steel plate was put in to help it heal.
Earlier today this pesky plate made an unexpected bid for freedom.
That across there you can see the scar, the original scar
and what's happened is it's punctured through the end there.
The skin wearing down over the metal plate, that's quite bizarre, definitely.
Edward loves nothing more than whizzing about on his beloved
mountain bike but our hero's hobby was to be his undoing.
A biking blunder sent Edward hurtling over the handlebars causing him to break his collarbone.
Fortunately doctors could mend his cracked clavicle using a steel plate
but Edward's run of bad luck wasn't over.
Although it wasn't haring about on his bike that caused his next calamity.
-I fancy a cup of tea.
-On his way to the kitchen to make a cuppa our unlucky hero tripped and
landed on exactly the same broken bone causing his metalwork to shoot straight out of his left shoulder.
First Edward needs to have his bizarre bionic shoulder pad X-rayed
to reveal just how far the protruding plate has slipped.
With the results in, the damage is assessed by Dr Tristan Dyer.
Looking on the X-ray you can see that the skin is very tight over the top of the bit of metal.
He could get a nasty infection within the bone so if he hadn't come in then he'd have had serious problems.
To prevent infection Edward's being given antibiotics and the wound is cleaned.
Medics have also decided that the plate needs to go so our BMX bandit swaps his beloved bike
for a less impressive pair of wheels as he's sent up to the ward to wait for surgery.
It's the big day and Edward's gearing up for his off the shoulder number.
I'm just about to go down to have the plate removed, quite looking forward to it in a strange kind of way.
The plate was originally inserted to help the broken collarbone fuse
and would have been removed anyway once the bones had knitted together.
As it's now doing more harm than good it can make an early exit.
This gentleman fractured his clavicle, his collarbone.
Normally there are some ligaments here which hold the collarbone should be down here.
What's happened is he's ruptured those ligaments and the collarbone
has popped up like this which means that the plate was protruding.
So today we're just going to remove all the metalwork out.
In theatre the team are ready to get to grips with their medical Meccano set, this might be the point
for more squeamish viewers to avert their eyes.
The surgeon starts by slicing open his shoulder revealing the plate in all its gory glory.
To release the plate, the screws need to be removed using what else but a common or garden screwdriver.
With the screws out the plate finally wins its bid for freedom
but the plate hasn't been without its uses.
The operation reveals Edward's collarbone has healed nicely.
You can see here it's all moving as one, there's no obvious break or fracture.
So there's no need to insert another plate and the only thing left to do is stitch Edward up.
You can sew it together now.
The skilful surgeons might have made this look as easy as
falling off a bike but it could have been far more complicated.
There's always potential that things could be a bit more difficult, especially screw heads can break
or it can be very stuck down and it can be difficult to get out.
Pleased with how it went, hopefully the patient will be happy with the result and it's good news for him
that the bone had healed up and there was no evidence of any infection.
A few weeks later, Edward's been reunited with his trusty steed.
It's been probably about six months since the original injury, so it's quite a long time, it's half a year
to have stuff going on and being in slings and in and out of hospital.
It feels good to finally be over and hopefully get back to normal life again.
Before you kind of think you're indestructible but till stuff like
this happens you realise that you are actually quite fragile,
so I think I'll be a little bit wary and get some more padding.
Next time on Bizarre ER...
A Bradford rag and bone man nearly turns his hand into scrap,
a bouncy castle calamity results in a splitting head...
Never try and do the waltz on a a bouncy castle.
And we tell the amazing story of how this man grabbed the headlines
when he became the first person in medical history to undergo
a full successful hand transplant.
I will never ever forget what was given to me.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Featuring a schoolboy who needed stitches after a bizarre joyride in an old lady's shopping trolley; a woodsman who ripped open his wrist with a machete; and a teenager who needed treatment after being terrorised by a terrier; and surgeons operating on a man after the metal plate on his collar bone popped out of his left shoulder.
Plus, we meet the Norwegian adventurers who, on an Arctic expedition, were attacked in their sleep by a deadly polar bear.