Fortunate Son

📸 via @medicaltalks
by @medicaltalks

This teen is lucky to be alive after he was stabbed through the neck by a needlefish!

This injury occurred when a needlefish jumped out of the water and pierced the neck of a boat passenger!

The teen was fishing with his parents at the time in Buton waters, South East Sulawesi on Saturday, January 18, and it is believed the needlefish “flew in their direction” impaling itself in the unsuspecting teen’s neck narrowly missing life-giving arteries and blood vessels.

Photographs show the fish’s snout pierced all the way through the patient’s neck from right under his chin through to under the back of his skull.

Luckily the teen was rushed to a hospital before being transferred to a larger hospital to undergo a delicate surgical procedure.

Five doctors including three surgeons and two anaesthetists helped to removed the impaled fish from the patient’s neck.

The chief surgeon told local media the team had to be very careful due to large vessels being in close range of the injured site. It took two hours to perform the procedure.

He is now recovering, with doctors monitoring his condition over the next few days in case of infection.

Needlefish are adept jumpers, carnivorous in habit, and distinguished by long, slender jaws equipped with sharp teeth.

They can make short jumps out of the water traveling at up to 60 km/h (37 mph) and often leap over the decks of shallow boats rather than going around.

The largest needlefish ever recorded measured about 1.2 m (4 feet) long!