Fork removed from man's stomach

Doctors operating on a patient who was rushed to hospital with stomach pains have discovered a plastic fork in his belly.

Lee Gardner, who was vomiting blood and had stomach cramps, told surgeons in Barnsley, South Yorkshire, he had accidentally swallowed the nine-inch fork a decade ago.

But Mr Gardner, 40, said he had forgotten he had eaten it as doctors at the time assured him it would pass through his system naturally.

"When they were looking inside me with the camera, the doctor said 'Are you sure you've not swallowed anything?'," he told the Barnsley Chronicle.

"I said no but when he said 'Are you sure? I can see prongs of what appears to be a fork', I remembered accidentally swallowing one years and years ago."

Mr Gardner said he was playing around with a plastic fork in his mouth and gagged, accidentally swallowing it, but it had never caused him problems.

Doctors at Barnsley Hospital found that the prongs had pressed on the stomach lining causing an ulcer that led to the bleeding.

Consultant general surgeon Hanis Shiwani said it would have been too dangerous to try to remove the object without surgery and carried out a 45-minute operation to cut open Mr Gardner's stomach.

Mr Gardner, who was discharged from hospital this week, is expected to make a full recovery.