A woman from New York is recovering from a liver transplant after an infected nose ring caused a near-death experience. And boy, is it terrifying to the point where we’re triple cleaning our piercings right now!
On Thursday, CBS New York reported that the woman, Dana Smith, had impulsively decided to get her nose pierced with a tiny diamond stud a few days after Thanksgiving. It reportedly had only cost $60 — but might have cost her so much more in the end!
About a month later, Smith started to not feel well, describing the symptoms as “stomach pains” and a loss of appetite to the point where she could barely consume any food or liquids. However, she was hesitant to even go to the hospital because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. When the pain began to get worse, the Queens resident said ultimately “[she] felt like [she] didn’t have a choice.” Smith told ABC 7 that:
“I was just drinking water. I couldn’t hold the water down. I guess at some point I started to throw up blood.”
Finally, the 37-year-old’s sister brought her to Long Island Jewish Medical Center on January 12, per ABC 7. But Smith reportedly didn’t remember anything that happened beyond the initial ultrasound. The woman essentially blacked out until she woke up to doctors telling her about receiving a brand spanking new liver!
Before the surgery, the doctors discovered Smith suffered from fulminant Hepatitis B, which is a rare condition that occurs from some sort of infection and soon after sends a patient into immediate liver failure. The New Yorker then got transferred to North Shore University Hospital, where she was placed on the transplant list and into a medically-induced coma. Luckily, the hospital found a match within 48 hours, and Smith underwent surgery on January 17.
However, the medical professionals couldn’t figure out the mystery of what had actually caused the fulminant Hepatitis B at first, but later discovered it stemmed from the undetected infection in the nose piercing. Northwell’s Transplant Services Director Dr. Lewis Teperman told CBS New York that:
“We couldn’t figure it out until all the tape was taken away from her nose and I said, ‘Look at that. When did you get that? It’s so tiny,’ and she then told us it was right at the end of Thanksgiving.”
In an interview with ABC 7, he added:
“This was the one unique change that had taken place in her life, this nose ring, and it’s the perfect time for the virus to incubate.”
Absolutely, crazzzyyy! Smith, who returned home on January 26, said the decision to finally seek out treatment is what actually saved her life.
“I just thought I just had a stomach virus or just something with my stomach. I never would have thought that my liver was failing, and there was a chance that I might not have been here today.”
Smith is also reportedly sharing her story to encourage others to go to the hospital if they need immediate help — even during a global health crisis.
“Even with COVID going on, you should still go get checked out because you never know. That one decision saved my life.”
Wow… lesson learned! We wish nothing but the best for Dana! Take all the time you need to recover and rest easy![Image via CBS New York/YouTube]