This was a case of a real snake going after a man’s “snake” while he was using a toilet. In this case, the second snake wasn’t the man’s pet, unless that’s what you like to call your penis. Instead, the target was the man’s penis and his balls, as described by a case report in the journal Urology Case Reports.
You’ve heard of the 2006 movie Snakes on a Plane? Well, this was an episode of “Snake in a Toilet.” It didn’t have actor Samuel Jackson yelling, “I have had it with these mother-bleeping snakes on this mother-bleeping plane.” Rather doctors (G.H. Dijkema, J.J.Pat, and M.G. Steffens) from the Isala klinieken hospital in the Netherlands described what happened to a 47-year-old man while he was vacationing in a South African nature reserve.
The man had to use a toilet because that’s the number one and number two thing that people have to do. But he didn’t realize that the toilet contained a snouted cobra (Naja annulifera). Checking the toilet for a cobra may not be the first thing on your mind when you’ve got to use the bathroom.
The cobra then treated the man’s genitals as if they were a hot dog and meatballs and bit them. The man began feeling pain and a burning sensation in his genitals because that’s what happens when a freaking cobra bites your genitals. That pain radiated out to his groin and up to his abdomen and chest. That should be a groin concern that one needs urgent medical attention. However, the man had to wait three hours before a helicopter could bring him to the nearest trauma center that was 350 km away.
When the man arrived at the hospital, doctors noted that his genitals were swollen, but not in a good way. They were also deep purple, which is not the normal color for genitals. An eggplant may be the emoji for a penis. But that doesn’t mean that your penis should actually be the same color as an eggplant.
That wasn’t the only thing wrong with his genitals. He was suffering from scrotal necrosis as well. Necrosis is a medical term for tissue death. So basically his scrotum was rotting away.
This obviously was a medical emergency. There is never a situation where a doctor should tell you, “everything checks out fine, except for the fact that your scrotum is rotting away. You’re good to go now.”
The skin and underlying tissue on the man’s genitals were breaking down due to the toxins in the snouted cobra venom that can destroy cells and cause inflammation. The doctors gave the man eight doses of snake venom antiserum, tetanus prophylaxis, and antibiotics. The venom also included a toxin, metalloproteinase, that can destroy red blood cells. This may have led to the man’s kidneys failing, requiring the man to undergo dialysis.
A week later, after doctors were able to stabilize the damage being caused to the man’s genitals, the man went to the operating room, where the surgeon removed dead skin from his genitals. The surgeon closed the wound on his scrotum and left a drain there. The surgeon also noted a hole in the shaft of his penis, cut away the dead tissue, and placed a vacuum device on his genitals to help the wound heal. And, no, this is not the same as using a vacuum cleaner on your penis, which you shouldn’t do.
After nine days, the man returned home to the Netherlands, where he received further care at the Isala klinieken hospital. There, he developed a fever and received more antibiotics because bacteria, Klebsiella pneumoniae and Enterobacter cloacae, were found in his wound. The man underwent further procedures on his penis. First, there was more removal of dead tissue from the shaft of his penis. Then six days later, the man returned to the operating room, where a plastic surgeon took some skin from the man’s groin and sewed it into his penis to cover the defect. After the man’s kidney function improved, he was discharged from the hospital.
A check-up a year later revealed that the man had recovered full use of and full sensation in his penis. His wounds had healed as well. He was however experiencing a pulling sensation. While you may think a pulling sensation on your penis is a good thing, it isn’t quite the case when the scars are creating that sensation. Therefore, the plastic surgeon performed a Z-plasty on the scars. Now, Z-plasties have nothing to do with ziti, zebras or zeitgeist. Instead, a Z-plasty is a procedure that involves making a Z-shaped incision across a scar, raising the resulting triangular flaps of skin, and transposing them in a manner that may improve the configuration and appearance of the scar.
While snake bites are not super rare, such bites tend to occur on people’s arms and legs rather than penises. After all, you are more likely to expose your extremities to snakes. If you are thinking of waving your penis at a snake, that’s generally a bad idea. Most likely, you will lose any comparison in length. Plus, it’s not fun to get bitten in the genitals by a snake. You probably didn’t need a medical case report to tell you that. But the case report did show some of the complications that can occur.
The case report had a warning as well: “always flush the toilet before sitting down in countries notorious for their snake population!” Additionally, whenever you ask, “where’s the bathroom,” consider following up by inquiring, “do you happen to keep any snakes in the toilet?” That long, log-like object in the toilet bowl may not be what you think it is. Especially if the object is moving and hissing at you.