An unnamed man from Auckland, New Zealand presented himself at the Auckland City Hospital, seeking out emergency treatment for an embarrassing problem. The man had an eel stuck up his rear.
According to the New Zealand Herald, the patient underwent an X-ray procedure and a scan immediately, which confirmed the unlikely source of his problems. The eel was then safely removed.
Although they are trying to keep the identity of the patient a secret, probably to spare him further ridicule, staff members have said that the eel was quite large.
"The eel was about the size of a decent sprig of asparagus and the incident is the talk of the place," one hospital source said.
Because of the size of the animal, it is unlikely that it got there by accident. In fact, how it got trapped up a grown man's rectum remains a mystery.
"In response to a direct query from the Herald on Sunday, we can confirm that an adult male presented at Auckland City Hospital this week with an eel inside him," Matt Rogers, spokesman for Auckland District Health Board, said, not wanting to comment more on the issue.
There is a possibility that the incident happened at a spa. The Huffington Post reports about a similar incident happening last year, in China. A man by the name of Zhang Nan had an eel crawl up, all the way to his bladder, during a spa treatment.
The treatment was "similar to those unusual pedicures that have fish eat dead skin off people's feet - except that you're fully submerged, and you're probably naked, and there are eels all over you," reporters at the Los Angeles Times commented at the time.
Another possible explanation for this phenomenon is the possibility that a dare or a practical joke went wrong. In 2010, another man from China was found with an eel inserted in his rectum following a prank. Unfortunately, the man lost his life after the eel crawled up his intestinal tract and caused severe internal bleeding.