Not just cockroaches: Here are other crazy objects found in people’s skulls

Warning: This post may cause you to believe something is residing in your skull. Don’t worry, it's all in your head.

A 2007 report in the Indian Journal of Psychiatry tells of an 18-year-old boy who—after a motorbike accident that injured his right parietal—underwent brain surgery. Nine months later, he was experiencing psychiatric and behavioral problems. An X-ray revealed a dense area right in the spot that had required surgery. When doctors opened his skull back up, they found a piece of cotton gauze that had been left behind. The boy's symptoms disappeared after its removal. Pixabay


This week, The Times of India reported on a 42-year-old Indian woman who went to the emergency room complaining of a severely painful “tingling, crawling sensation” in her head. Two sets of doctors couldn’t figure out the cause of her pain, but the third set finally made a breakthrough: They determined it was a “foreign body that seemed to be mobile,” ordered a scan, and found a living, fully-grown cockroach lodged inside her nasal cavity. Doctors quickly guided a flexible tube called an endoscope up the woman’s nose to remove the bug. Luckily, everything turned out okay for both the woman and sneaky pest, which doctors noted was crawling around a petri dish after it had been removed.

Don’t panic. Adult-sized, living cockroaches making their way up someone’s nostrils without them knowing it is an extremely rare event. However, finding objects that don’t belong in someone’s skull is not that uncommon in the medical world. In fact, according to the Indian Times, the doctor that successfully removed the roach already had the pleasure of excising beads, a button cell, a leech, and chalk from other unfortunate noggins.

Here are some other reports of crazy objects making their way into available brain passages:

ball point pen removed from a person's nose
teeth found in a brain tumor
larvae in ear canal

Lastly, it’s important to note that the aforementioned Indian woman was absolutely not the first person to have a cockroach crawl into a bodily crevice. Some doctors claim that cockroaches and flying insects are actually the most common living things to enter the ear canal. A 2014 BBC report told of a man who had a 2 cm cockroach removed from his ear. Its a scary world, you guys. Good luck out there.