A routine trip to the dentist was anything but normal — after an Illinois man inhaled the dentist’s drill bit and had to go to the hospital to get it removed last month.
Tom Jozsi, 60, told WISN-TV that he was at the dentist getting his tooth filled when he was told he swallowed a tool.
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“I didn’t really even feel it going down. All I felt was a cough. When they did the CT scan they realized, ‘You didn’t swallow it. You inhaled it,’” he said. Doctors believe that Jozsi inhaled just before he coughed, sending the 1-inch bit deep into Jozsi’s lung.
Dr. Abdul Alraiyes, at Aurora Medical Center-Kenosha in Wisconsin, said the bit was so deep that normal scopes couldn’t reach it. Jozsi said he was told that if it couldn’t be taken out, part of his lung would have to be removed.
Alraiyes and his medical team decided to try a newer device to remove the object — one that’s designed for early detection of cancer.
Video of the scan shows the medical team was able to navigate the narrow airways, reach the drill piece and pull it out without harming Jozsi.
“I was never so happy as when I opened my eyes, and I saw him with a smile under that mask shaking a little plastic container with the tool in it,” Jozsi said.
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Joszki said he now keeps the drill bit on a shelf at home.
Alraiyes said colleagues in Michigan and Ohio have reported seeing similar cases.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.