Construction worker shoots nail through eye into brain — and keeps sight

He really hit the nail on the head — and not in a good way.

A construction worker miraculously survived — and kept his sight — after a 3-centimeter nail shot through his eye and became lodged in his brain when a nail gun malfunctioned.

In a nail-biting surgery, doctors in Malaysia were able to safely remove the nail — and the 30-year-old man even regained his eyesight after the freak on-the-job accident, according to a medical study published this week. 

The man, a foreign worker, was using an air-pressured nail gun without wearing protective goggles. The equipment jammed, and when he peeked down into the gun barrel to inspect it, he accidentally fired a nail into his left eye.

Besides complaining of obvious pain in his left eye — which was extensively bleeding — and a headache, he had no other apparent issues when he arrived at the hospital and was completely cooperative and cognizant, doctors said.

X-rays revealed the nail lodged into the man’s brain after it entered through his left eye.
A three-dimensional reconstructed brain shows how the nail penetrated in the left orbital roof and lodged in the frontal lobes.

The patient was unable to see out of the eye, they noted.

Doctors immediately gave him a tetanus jab, antibiotics through a drip and anti-seizure medication.

Shocking X-ray images show the nail, measuring 3.2 cm, stuck deep into the frontal lobe of the man’s brain — which is vital for movement and speech. The bleeding had spread to other parts of his brain.

He also suffered wounds of the lateral canthus of the left eye — where the two eyelids meet — and fractures of the left orbital roof and floor, according to the study, which was published in the medical journal Cureus.

The nail somehow missed vital arteries and nerves, and he escaped any long-term damage, the study said. 

The man also sustained fractures of the left orbital roof and floor.

He underwent emergency brain surgery, which was successful, and doctors repaired his eyelids.

“The nail was successfully removed as a single piece, and there was no active bleeding after removal of the nail,” doctors wrote.

Doctors kept the eye hydrated and dressed it daily during his stay at the hospital. He was discharged after five days.

“He recovered well during his postoperative period with no neurological deficit,” doctors said.

While the eye appeared to be healing well, the man was still unable to see light through the left eye and could not shut it properly a week later. He returned to his home country for further treatment.

“This case highlights the importance of wearing proper personal protective equipment at work,” the study confirmed.


Written by SaleemBaloch

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