Inmate hides marijuana in nostril, finds it 18 years later

The find was documented in a medical journal as the cause of a stone formation in the inmate's nose


Brian Niemietz
New York Daily News

SYDNEY, Australia — His joint pains were getting worse.

An Australian ex-con learned during a medical checkup that the source of his sinus headaches was a balloon filled with marijuana he’d hidden in his nasal cavity while serving time 18 years ago.

The unidentified 48-year-old Sydney man’s plight was documented in the medical journal BMJ Case Reports, which called it “the first reported case of prison-acquired marijuana-based rhinolith.”

A rhinolith is defined medically as a stone formation within the nasal cavity.

The man admitted shoving the balloon up his nose after his girlfriend sneaked the contraband into the corrections facility where he was serving time, according to Newsweek. It’s unclear why he was incarcerated or for how long.

When he returned to captivity and tried picking the balloon from his nose, the obstruction went further into the former inmate’s head and out of reach. He assumed the Mary Jane had passed through his system and gave it no more thought until a recent X-ray revealed the 1.9-centimeter “rubber capsule containing degenerate vegetable/plant matter.”

The drugs were reportedly extracted and the patient made a full recovery.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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