A pair of Chinese surgeons saved the life of an elderly man after he began suffering from an enlarged prostate during a very long flight this week.
Said flight was heading to New York from China when the patient, who was previously diagnosed with a swollen prostate, went into shock. According to Guangzhou-based New Express (h/t the South China Morning Post), surgeons Zhang Hong, from the First Affiliated Hospital of Jinan University in Guangzhou, and Xiao Zhanxiang, from Hainan Provincial People’s Hospital in Haikou, responded to a call for emergency medical assistance about 10 hours into the trip.
The elderly man was said to be sweating profusely and had a swollen belly. Zhang said he was already showing signs of shock and they estimated that there was about a liter of urine trapped in his bladder. They were left with little choice but to act as there were six hours of flying left to go.
“If we had not dealt with the situation in time, the patient’s life would have been at risk,” Zhang explained.
The doctors decided to puncture the patient's bladder and release the urine by using materials they got on the plane, including straws from milk boxes. Flight attendants got the man to lie on his side, on top of blankets, so the procedure could be undertaken.
A needle was inserted in an attempt to release the urine but the puncture was not large enough to facilitate that on its own, prompting Zhang to siphon it with his mouth. It took him around half an hour, but the procedure was successful.
“It was an emergency situation. I couldn’t figure out another way,” he explained. “When I saw that the man could hardly bear the pain anymore, my only thought was how to get the urine out of his bladder."
The patient was asked to lie down for an additional 30 minutes and check in with a physician upon landing. We imagine he's extremely grateful to have had such willing aids during what could have been his last flight.
Not all heroes wear capes.
Source: South China Morning Post