When Cheryl Harrison bit into her freshly grilled burger a few weeks ago, there was something extra besides the meat, bun and condiments.
The 52-year-old woman from Wallingford, Connecticut, needed emergency surgery after swallowing a metal bristle that fell off a grill brush and into her patty.
“Obviously, if it was in my mouth and I bit it, I wouldn’t have swallowed it,” she told WTNH TV. “It must have been positioned in that burger just perfect, and I ingested it and swallowed it.”
Harrison felt fine for two days, but went to a local hospital after suddenly feeling extreme stomach pain. A scan revealed the presence of an inch-long metal wire in her intestine, according to 7Online.com.
Harrison immediately went into surgery to have the bristle removed.
Aziz Benbrahim, the doctor who performed the surgery, said Harrison could have died if she had not gone to the hospital.
“It’s a flexible piece of metal so when you eat it, you don’t feel it in your mouth,” he told ABC News. “It goes down to your small intestine and we have a normal kink, 90 degree kink, and that bristle can’t negotiate the turn and that’s how it made a hole in her intestine.”
Harrison is recovering well from the operation, but bristles at the thought that anyone might suffer a similar fate.
“Visually check to see if any bristles hanging out or stuck on the grill. You just really don’t want that to happen to you,” Harrison told Fox Connecticut.