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Archive for Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Pencil removed from woman’s brain

August 8, 2007

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— A woman who had a pencil lodged in her head for 55 years after a childhood accident has finally had most of it removed, which should end her chronic headaches and nosebleeds, her doctor said Tuesday.

Margaret Wegner was 4 when she fell while carrying the 3.15-inch pencil, which went through her cheek and into her brain.

"It bored right through the skin and disappeared into my head," Wegner, now 59, told Germany's best-selling newspaper, Bild. "It hurt like crazy."

At the time, the technology did not exist to safely remove the pencil, so Wegner had to live with it - and the ensuing chronic headaches and nosebleeds- for the next 5 1/2 decades.

But on Friday, Dr. Hans Behrbohm, an ear, nose and throat specialist at Berlin's Park-Klinik Weissensee, was able to identify the exact location of the pencil so that he could determine the risks of removing it, and then took most of it out.

Although a piece of a pencil about four-fifths of an inch long could not be removed, Behrbohm said it does not pose a danger.

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