Human Piggybank: A man who ingested 350 coins

1
The new England journal of medicine

Life is easy with online banking, plastic money, and bitcoin. Ever wondered how difficult it may have been for the previous generations? What piggy banks they used to keep their money safe? Especially if it is around 350 coins and more?

Well, one used his own body as a mini bank.

In 2002, A 62 years old, French man presented with the complaint of abdominal pain and swelling. He could not eat or perform regular bowel habits. His past medical history revealed that he had a psychiatric illness. Diagnostic tests led to an unexpected discovery. Xray revealed a huge amount of money in the patient’s stomach in the form of 350 coins, a total of 5.5 kg in weight. This was because the man had ingested these 350 coins.

Not only coins but there was a collection of jewels and needles, no doubt which was absolutely absurd.

All of this together made approximately $650, now that’s one big amount to carry like that! Apparently, it took him 10 years to collect all these coins.

The coins damaged the stomach and pushed it down between the hips. 5 days later surgery was performed to remove these troublesome foreign bodies. 

The man still died 12 days later because of the complications despite the successful surgery. 

Pica: The underlying cause of coin collecting habit?

The doctors diagnosed this as pica.

Pica is an eating disorder characterised by consuming things not considered food like chalk, ash, ice, sand, hair etc.

Pica causes iron deficiency anaemia. These unusual cravings mean that the body is trying to replenish its low nutrients level.

Mental health conditions like schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is one of the cause.

Dieting to get rid of excess body fat and malnutrition are some of the many causes of pica. Don’t be surprised, there are cases of people eating forks, feces etc.

1 COMMENT

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here