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This is a question DIY Surgery

Majoringram tells us: I once had a wart on my hand and went to the doc to get it frozen. It hurt, lots. Instead of having to go back for more, I got my trusty rambo knife and cut the thing off. Three years later, and not even a scar!

(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 12:08)
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This question is now closed.

DIY appendectomy
A friend of my father's woke up one morning feeling rather poorly. This was not good, as he was due to fly to a conference in the US the next day, so he took himself down to the doctor to get it sorted. Unfortunately for him, the doctor informed him that he had appendicitis, and would need to be booked in for surgery as soon as possible.

This was unacceptable, he said. He had a very important conference to get to, and had to be on the plane the next day. Surgery was not an option. So the doctor told him there was one other possibility: go home, run a very hot bath, get in the bath and then drink an entire bottle of vodka.

He did it. It worked. He got on the plane the next day with a raging hangover, but the appendicitis symptoms were gone and never came back.

I know this sounds like bullshit, but my dad knows the doctor as well as the guy and claims to have heard the story independently from both of them, and he's not really one for making stuff up.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 23:44, 10 replies)
Stop the QOTW, I win
I regularly remove my splinters myself. With a needle and everything. And I hardly cry at all.

I'm well hard, me.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 23:10, Reply)
not my story....
But i think that a self appendectomy is pretty hard to beat!....
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 22:17, 5 replies)
Can we use this as another excuse to bring up the Edmund/Ed's Meds/Craig Colcough story?
Oh good.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 22:04, Reply)
murder on the dancefloor
in which my friend tries a bit of impromptu nail surgery on my foot.

one night, i was out clubbing with 2 of my mates. as it was summer, i was wearing sandals without socks or tights. however, my mate had come out straight from work and was wearing steel toecapped boots. as we were both pretty much hammered, dancing was strangely attractive.
we were both getting down to the latest tunes, when my mate misjudged his step. his massive clodhopping boot came crashing down full-force onto my foot, crushing my middle toenail. i yelled like fuck but, due to the music, my mate didn't realise why i was shouting. as he pulled his foot away, my crushed toenail was ripped out of its toe-based home, leaving my foot pissing bloodd everywhere. when i saw the state of my foot, i went an almost greyish-white. my mate, on the other hand, decided that antiseptic was called for, so he poured a bottle of WKD over my foot. sweet dancing grandma, it hurt. not wanting to go home or spend the night in casualty, i decided that drowning my pain was the best idea, so many more drinks were consumed.
the next morning, my foot looked truly horrendous. my toe was hugely swollen and bruising had started to show. a mixture of mud, blood and blue WKD coated my foot. i'm amazed it didn't get infected.
2 months later, my toenail had grown back. i've never again worn sandals while drinking with that particular friend, though.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 21:27, Reply)
sewn myself up
Once when I was running from the police whom had tried to run me out of town as a drifter I fell from a cliff edge as they were trying to shoot me from a helicopter.

I smashed through a few branches on my way down and gashed open my muscular upper arm, I reached for my trusty survival knife and unscrewed the cap and took out the needle and thread with which I proceeded to sew up the wound without an anaesthetic.. I was well pissed.. They drew first blood
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 21:09, 1 reply)
DIY dentistry
A couple of weeks before my 21st birthday, I started getting a dull ache in my jaw - I dismissed it as my wisdom teeth settling in and thought nothing more of it, despite the pain getting steadily worse. I was in the midst of planning the mother of all piss ups and nothing was going to stand in my way.

About a week before the big day, I noticed that the area around one of my wisdom teeth was a bit red and swollen. I did what any self-respecting man does, and gave it a good poke.

As any self-respecting man knows, you should never give it a good poke.

Erm, the nicest way I can put this is that it sort of... burst. I'm not really sure what I thought I was going to achieve by poking it, but I'm pretty certain that it wasn't the sensation and image in the mirror of my tongue lolling about on a sea of pus like someone sitting in a bath of custard for Children in Need.

The next 15 mins was spent intermittently vomiting then vigorously scrubbing and re-scrubbing my teeth to get the taste out my mouth. Imagine Barrymore trying to clean his poolside before the cops came and you're getting there. I went to the dentist and he explained that I had a fairly large infection under the tooth, and gave me antibiotics. Unfortunately the one he gave me was metronidazole, which was about to shit all over my birthday. See, this stuff doesn't go well with alcohol. At all. It reacts with booze in kinda the same way as the drug they treat alcoholism with, so when you drink you get nausea, vomiting, racing pulse, flushes etc (but without the pleasure of actually being riotously pissed in between). So I decided to take matters into my own hands.

At the time, I was working in a lab where we regularly used a lot of sterile needles and syringes so I swiped a few and nabbed a bit of neat alcohol too.

I'm not quite sure what the cleaner thought when she saw me injecting pure ethanol into my gums, or what she made of my panicked "please don't tell the boss - I'm not mainlining booze, I'm not a tramp, let me prove it to you" explanation by squeezing my gum at her, which by now looked like a small apple wearing a tooth for a hat. The upshot is that as a result of shooting ethanol into my gum, the infection cleared in a day or two and I never needed the antibiotics, and with a mouth that no longer resembled a whore's fanny, I got pissed as a lord on my 21st! Yay!

Unfortunately Xmas and new year were fucked as the infection came back a couple of weeks later leading to two of my wisdom teeth being pulled the week before Xmas, and the other two being done a week later just in time for new year. Fuckhammers.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 21:05, 1 reply)
I realise this may not be of much use
but tweezers and tcp are the perfect way to ensure your skin stays clear if you're prone to spots - even at the red irritating lump stage, break skin, extract white pus with tweezers, apply TCP on a cotton bud if you wish, and you won't be able to tell it was there in a few hours. I don't get many spots, but not once have I had one scar after doing this.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 21:01, 1 reply)
Jugular's guillotine story reminds me
Not quite surgery, but involves a blade and, well, healing of a spiritual kind perhaps.

Visiting a commercial printer, my brother remarked on the awesome paper-guillotine they had working away in the corner.

Apparently, they have various sensors and widgets to stop careless printers having to go around in two pairs of socks on cold days, but, in a chilling insight to the emotional state of your average printer;

"if you lean in just right, you can cover the sensors and still get your head in there far enough..."
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:42, Reply)
Does anyone else...
...think that using a Ped-Egg is exactly like taking a cheese grater to their feet?
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:39, 4 replies)
Not my stories, but a friend I used to work with..
These two stories (one surgical, the other not so surgical) came from a postdoc who was working in the lab I did my PhD in. He once decided to treat a slight infection in his thumb with antibiotics we had in the lab. The ones that say "Not intended for medical use". He made up the antibiotic solution, stuck a pipette tip containing the solution under the edge of his thumbnail, and pipetted out into the inflamed part of his thumb. Next day the infection had gone. On another occasion he was doing a caesium chloride gradient, and accidentally injected himself with the caesium chloride. I believe caesium chloride is a carcinogen, which may explain the lump that appeared a wee while later. Which he then cut out with a scalpel from the lab.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:38, 9 replies)
lip lump
i once had a white lump on my top lip. being a world-class procrastinator, i did nothing about it for quite some time, believing it to be a simple spot. after about 3 months, i realised the milky bugger wasn't going anywhere without force, so i decided on a bit of facial eviction.
first, i tried squeezing. this hurt and made my eyes water, but didn't work. second, i tried abrasive cleansing wipes. no joy.
finally, i decided it was time to bite the bullet and bring out the big guns. in this case, a sterilised darning needle. i tentatively jabbed at my pustulent stowaway but, it seemed, not hard enough. expecting a brief pop and not-so-brief pain, i jabbed harder. for just a moment, the spot resisted, but to no avail. the needle plunged into its gungy centre like a hot knife through butter. curiously, there was no pain, but i now had a needle hanging out of my face. i grabbed the head(of the needle, you filthy-minded buggers!) and yanked. out it popped. the expected pus, however, was nowhere to be seen.
as there was clearly a hole in my lip now, i thought that squeezing might actually work this time.
it did. oh, my word, it did. what came out wasn't so much pus as a 2-foot long worm of white crap. there seemed to be no end to it. fortunately, i was more intrigued than sickened.
that was about 8 years ago. the spot has never returned, but i do still have a very small scar on my lip.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:34, 2 replies)
Large sub-surface zits
Don't really get spots these days (I'm over 40 ffs), but a pin (briefly heated to red heat in a gas flame to sterilise it) is useful for popping them and then squeezing out all the pus. Ewwww.

Doesn't quite give the satisfaction of a perfectly-squeezed teenage zit which not only splurges the mirror, it actually snaps your head back with the recoil.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:31, 1 reply)
my brother took his own braces off to avoid paying the orthodontist
finicky work, but worth it if you're a cheap bastard
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:30, Reply)
I get a lot of blisters...
I tend to puncture my own blisters, since I get a lot of them. I did it once on vacation, and there was a lot of pain, blister juice and blood leaking out, but after an hour I could walk again and I was fine.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:17, 1 reply)
Not my story - apologies if I heard this from you......
A man working at a paper mill working on the cutting press decides to override the safety mechanism which stops the blades dropping when passing a certain barrier, saving time or somesuch!

So he reaches through with his left hand to pull the paper through and *SLAM* .....goodbye left hand...... what's his natural reaction?

To reach for his, now amputated, left hand with his right
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 20:15, 2 replies)
I bet nobody believes me
But I've got a time machine. It's true
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:59, 3 replies)
In my mid-late teens I was bothered with ingrowing tonails.
Right in the top corners of my big toes. Quite often I'd come home, take off the shoes and come face to face with bright red socks. One of the girls in the video store, I worked in at the time, started crying after standing on my foot when I took my shoe off to reveal a blood soaked sock that went all the way back to the heel.
I often too to grabbing a pair of scissors and cutting at an angle, then grabbing the loose flap of toenail and pulling. Fucking disgusting thinking about it now.
Eventually I had to go to the doctors who stuck a load of needles in the top of my toe and cut half my nail off.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:50, 1 reply)
Big white chin thing
I had this white lump thing that started growing on my chin so I went to the quacks. He said it was a wart and nothing to worry about. So I went home but the bastard started getting bigger and bigger until people started noticing it. My sister came round for a cup of tea and the first thing she did was point at it and say "Eurgh, what's that you dirty cunt?!"
So I went back to the quack and again he said it was nothing to worry about. I begged to differ and told him people were starting to think I was a dirty cunt. He said there was nothing he do as non-dangerous facial lesions was a job for a private plastic surgeon.
So that very evening I sterilized my chin and a pair of scissors, froze the foul alien object with an ice-cube, and cut the bastard off. The hole in my face bled for over an hour but it never came back.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:47, Reply)
Had a big one on my stomach. Woke up one morning, picked at it with a slightly over-long fingernail and it came off. The whole thing. Lots of blood.

It healed without a trace and the mole has never come back. Doctors, eh? What do they know?
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:35, Reply)
Not manly or cringe worthy
but it's the only thing I can think of for this week.

I had cut myself shaving just below the jawbone, in that tricky spot that connects your cheek to your neck. I don't know what caused it, but with the hair trying to grow back in, the scab forming, and me having to shave everyday anyway (military) it ended up getting cut open again and again every day. After about a month I was left with a growth roughly the diameter of the eraser tip of a pencil, and sticking out by almost 2mm. Scar tissue was beginning to grow over the strangely coloured scab now and I was getting upset at having to stem the flow of blood every morning before work, so I grabbed a pair of tweezers, pinched the scab and surrounding skin as hard as I could, and pulled the whole thing clean off. I was left with a bleeding hole and torn skin, but gave it the weekend and a few vacation days to clear up. Tada, no more growth.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:07, 1 reply)
I have no idea if this is true or one of those urban myths all nurses/doctors tell their kids.
Picture the scene,

My mum is working at Dudley Road (now City) Hospital in Birmingham. It's about 8:30pm and it's pancake day. A husband and wife have appeared in Casualty her with a serious burn to her head and a large gash to the rear of her scalp and him with severe damage to his genitals. The couple are reluctant to explain how they came about these injuries.

Calling the couple through and administering the required treatments, ie. stitches and lots of them, the following story comes out as to how the injuries were sustained:-

While cooking pancakes the hubby is happily minding his own business when his wife comes into the kitchen and proceeds to perform an intimate act upon his person. This would have been fine but halfway through the act the husband manages to drop the pancake upon his wifes head causing her to bite down vigorously upon his member. She is in pain, he is in pain and the only way he can get her to release her clamp upon his cock is to belt her round the head with the frying pan.

I've no idea whether this is true but it makes me laugh like a drain.

Length? Well I would imagine it was quite a bit shorter following the trauma.

Ps Just realised this might be a pearoast.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:06, 5 replies)
This is terrible, I know.
When I was 14 or so I noticed a small white lump on my junk while participating in "extracurricular activities."

As no 14 year old will ever willingly go to the doctor for a dick problem, I decided it was up to me to fix it.

I had no real tools, except for a miniature souvenir samurai sword my dad had brought back from Japan, so that was what I used.

15 minutes or so of poking and wriggling, and the thing was out. It was a little white disk that felt like cartilage. I threw it away and got on with my life.

10 years later or so, it happened again. This time I went to a doctor like a sensible person, where she told me it was excess calcium and nothing to worry about. Even so, it was pretty dumb of me not to go to a doctor the first time.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 19:01, 2 replies)
Fucking magnets, how do they work?
A few years ago I decided to try my hand at flint napping. My other half at the time suggested I do something sensible such as wear safety gloves/goggles lest a nasty razor sharp shard of flint decide to become one with my person. Naturally I ignored this and carried on regardless. After a while I was dissatisfied with my progress, and, not following the simple logic that iron is softer than flint, decided to go at it with a lump hammer. *Something* broke off and sliced my finger open, which bled profusely. It was some weeks before I realised I had something lodged deep, deep inside there. The doctor wouldn't operate as it would apparently work it's way out eventually, but just completely disable my right index finger until it did. It was some years before I was able to get it out, and I discovered my method of surgery purely by accident. The *something* inside my finger was actually magnetic! I spent days at a time at my desk in the office with a hard drive magnet slowly teasing the mysterious object from my finger, until one day it tore through the surface, I pulled out a small cresent-shaped shard of lump hammer from my finger, leaving a strangely not bleeding hole visible all the way to the bone, and the greatest feeling of satisfaction I've ever felt.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 17:19, 5 replies)
For the curious, I can assure you
That setting a dislocated joint back into place can, and often does, hurt more than having it pop out in the first place. In my case it was my knee, and despite being drunk at the time and it being the second time I've had to do that, it still hurt like hell. I've dislocated that particular knee a total of three times over the years (yes, awful joints) but fortunately over the past decade it's managed to stay in place, though it does swell and lock up rather routinely. I suppose that eventually, I'll require proper surgery to keep me walking.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 17:18, 2 replies)
I can't attest to the veracity of this one as my dad told me it long ago. Still induces cringes...
Back in the '80s/early '90s growing up at my parents', my dad worked shifts as a textile worker (Oop North, though on an out-of-town industrial estate rather than in a dark, Satanic mill). The job required regular and respectful use of, essentially, massive fuck-off machines of varying degrees of crushingness, choppingness and mangleability.

Accidents happened, of course. My dad remained unscathed, but other more careless employees had lost a few bits and bobs here and there, ranging from a digit or two to, well, continued existence on the mortal plane. The goalkeeper for the five-aside team was famed for having two amazing shot-stopping hands, albeit with only six shot-stopping digits between them.

So, one of the lads on shift with my dad pays for a lapse of concentration with the loss of the tip of his middle finger, just below the nail. Painful, no doubt, but a lucky escape in comparison to some. Some staunching, a visit to A+E, the liberal application of gauze and bandage, a few days off work in a painkillered haze and a lesson learned. Job's a good 'un.

A few weeks pass and the dressing comes off, revealing his newly foreshortened finger. I always envision is as resembling an uncooked Richmond 64% pork sausage - smooth, wanly pink and unwholesome-looking.

The getting-used-to of it proceeds as more time passes, and soon enough, it's just the way things are. Which is presumably what makes the gradual appearance and growth of a little fleshy nubbin at the end something of mild interest, rather than a potential cause for concern. It's probably also the reason why our hero feels no need to visit a doctor, even if just to put his mind at ease.

Who needs a doctor to tell him what's obvious? It's obviously the lost nail pushing its way back out. Obviously.

So he gets the nail clippers

pincers the nubbin between the blades

and snips

the nerve ending

clear through.

He wakes a full two days later in hospital, finger freshly bandaged. I like to think that a doctor is at his bedside, looking down, his expression an open book. A book with one enormous gatefold page, printed with the words YOU DAFT TWAT.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 17:04, 13 replies)
After a particularly grueling game of football against local rivals 'College Heath', and obviously having scored a hat-trick, saved five penalties, and been picked for England but turned them down...ahem...sorry leftovers from last week.

Anyway, I went into the changing rooms and removed my by now 'legendary' boots, only to find my white socks were now crimson and leaking a trail of blood across the floor.

My teammates gathered round to watch grimly as I peeled them off to reveal the source. My gammy big toes.

The ingrowing toenails had really gotten worse through neglect over the season, and since a previous trip to the DR's had resulted in him injecting each toe about 5 times and then not letting the anesthetic work before trying to yank them out, I'd not been back.

When I got home I decided to grab some nail scissors and something to bite down on, and systematically set about cutting away the offending ingrowing bits until I was left with a little strip of nail in the centre of each big toe*.

It must have taken me about two hours and I was whiter than Casper's ginger cousin by the time I got out of the bathroom, and not through wanking my tanks empty for once.

They never have grown back properly and I've not had any bother with ingrowing toenails since.

* Please note, it is apparently far better to just cut a 'v' in the centre of each nail.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 17:00, Reply)
Handy tooth
Chris was a bit lary in college (Brighton Poly, late 80s) and would sometimes get into fights. One night Jacqui and me had managed to get home ok from the boozer/nightclub and were sitting around smoking weed and talking bollocks, as you do, when Chris stumbled in, clearly three sheets to the wind.
He'd continued to get even more tanked up on snakebite & black, and managed to pick a fight with someone far harder than he was (or at least, more sober). His right hand was swollen and red where the mammoth haymaker he'd launched had missed its target and clumped right into a wall. And his left eyebrow was grown to a size that would have impressed all the Neanderthal girls where his would-be target has fetched him a good 'un in reply.
Dr Shiny to the rescue!! Well, ok, not exactly a doctor, but a year one pass in BSc Pharmacy's gotta count for something, right? *hic*
So I cradle his damaged hand in mine, and ask if he can move his fingers. Barely perceptible millimetres of movement ensue so, just to be thorough, I grab hold of a finger before his drink-dulled reflexes can pull his hand away, and start bending and flexing it.
"Does this hurt, Chris?"
"Ow. A bit."
"As much as it did before? More? Or less?"
"About the same"
"Aha!" says Dr Shiny. "This means it can't be broken, because if it was you wouldn't be able to move it at all, and if I did it for you it'd hurt much more! You'll be fine, mate! Now, lemme have a look at that face..."
At which point, for some reason, Chris decided he'd come over all tired and wanted to be off to his bed.
the next morning, at breakfast, Chris came into the Halls refectory with his right hand in plaster up to the elbow.


Signing on with my new dentist in Bristol, I was pleased to find she was a fit brunette. Even more pleasing, she reckoned she knew why I kept getting toothache in the one place (right upper premolar) and, with a quick bit of root canal surgery, she'd be able to see me right.
I should have known it would be trouble when the anaesthetic injections proved about as effective as a homeopath's stash. She's digging around in my jawbone with what looks like a miniature bottle brush, while I'm in a flop sweat gripping the chair like it's made of marshmallow.
After a subsequent week of sleepless nights and more or less constant agony, and fearing the thought of going back to see the same dentist/torturer, I walked into the local offie with grim determination, bought a bottle of scotch, went back to my flat, sought out my pliers, and set about getting pissed enough to pluck up the courage to yank out the jagged shards of agony she'd left sticking out of my gums.
The scotch didn't dull the pain at all. I managed to get a couple of bits out over six or seven attempts, in between reeling round the flat in blind agony. The pliers didn't so much pull out the stumps of tooth as crush the bits that were sticking out of the gum, leaving lots of blood to spurt out all over the landlord's carpet.
After a day or two the pain subsided, but it was another two years before I could face another dentist.
Between the brunette's incompetence and my drunken self-mutilation - oh, and the abscess that she'd completely missed which had been the cause of the pain all along - the tooth was so badly damaged that even the fantastic Nigerian bloke in South Acton that eventually cleaned it up couldn't do much more than take out the remaining bits and allow the abscess to drain.

I've still got a gap there now.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 15:52, 7 replies)
How not to deal with infection
In the early 1930s, my great-grandma buggered off and disappeared and was never seen again. Having 13 kids, my grt-grandad couldn't cope, mainly due to stress and worry even after spending a small fortune on a firm of private detectives to track her down. The stress made him very ill and within a year he was dead. Within those 12 months however, a few of the kids moved in with my grandad who was one of the eldest and was already married, and the four youngest were taken into care, which in those days meant Barnardo's, the children's home.

One of the women in charge at that particular home was a slave-driving witch and would treat the place like a workhouse. She was truly evil it seems.

The youngest, my great-uncle Walter who was about 9 at the time was given the task of scouring the hearth of one of the fireplaces with some black lead and a handful of coarse wire-wool, which he had to finish before breakfast. Whilst he was doing this, a small length of swarf went right under his thumbnail. Not wanting to get into trouble by stopping his task, he pulled it out again with his teeth, and carried on, in tears.

His thumb throbbed all day, even though he had to do another four fireplaces and then go outside and wash all the windows, and you can imagine what that was like in November.

He hardly slept that night because of the pain, and the next morning most of the underneath of his thumbnail had become infected and gone black. The evil witch lady found him and gave him a bucket of water and a brush and told him to scrub the kitchen floor (or the scullery as it was called). He had been quietly sobbing all morning and putting his hand in the water was just too unbearable.
"I can't do it, my thumb hurts" he said.
"Where? And woe betide you if you're lying" said evil lady and she grabbed his hand and had a look. "Right, I'll fix that". She led him over to the stove and plunged his thumb in boiling water and held it there.

He said he screamed louder and longer than he ever has since, even when he was shot twice in the shin during the invasion of Germany. He was then strapped across the backside with a belt for making such a racket and then locked in a cupboard. A couple of hours later he was dragged out and sent to bed. His big-sister Beattie, who was about 12 found him still crying and bawling. Between the sobs, he told her what had happened and she gave him a big hug and said to wait there. She came back with the head of the house, a Mrs Morfitt, who looked at his thumb.

"Right, come with me." and she took him into town to the hospital where he thumb was treated properly. After this, they then went back to the home. On arrival, they sent for the evil lady. She came to find out what was going on. She saw Walter and shouted at him "What have you been saying? More lies I expect". Then she saw the two policemen Mrs Morfitt had brought back with her and then went quiet. One policeman sat with her whilst the other talked to Walter and then spoke to a number of other young boys who had all received similar treatment. Afterwards, the evil witch was then carted off and was never seen again.

He told me all this when I went to see him after he retired at 80 from his barber-shop which he opened in 1949. His thumb still bore the scars from that awful day even after 70 years.
(, Thu 20 Jan 2011, 15:51, 7 replies)

This question is now closed.

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