X-ray shows knife in man’s head (courtesy: Dominion Post)
A fully conscious New Zealand man waited six hours while surgeons debated the best course of action to remove a knife that had been imbedded deep into his brain.
Police in Wellington, New Zealand, said the 37-year-old man was stabbed during a disagreement at about 4 a.m. local time, the Dominion Post reported.
Surgeons spent six hours planning the operation, which was successful. Martin Hunn, a Wellington Hospital neurosurgeon, said the man “would have been in pain” as he waited for surgery, according to the report.
Dr. Hunn consulted an ear, nose and throat specialist before the man’s surgery. Though it had to be done quickly, such a delicate surgery needed some planning prior to the operation to remove the knife.
“It’s not the kind of operation we wanted to do at the end of the night,” Hunn told the paper.
The operation took five hours. The man, who was not named in the original report, went into surgery about 10 a.m. local time, according to the paper.
Hunn said the patient was lucky the knife, which was serrated, was not pulled out at the scene. According to modern treatment methods, emergency medical care calls for splinting and bandaging the knife in place, rather than pulling it out. To remove it at the scene, emergency medical specialists warn, could mean greater harm, bleeding and damage of the patient.
“It would have been extremely dangerous. A lot of people try and pull the offending object out – it’s best if it’s left in there,” Hunn told the Post.
Though severely injured, the man was expected to recover and not suffer any permanent brain damage.
Meanwhile, Peterson Hannah, 37, appeared in Wellington District Court yesterday and was charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent. He was remanded to custody and is expected to appear in court again on Friday, the paper reported.