Whereas we would've stripped naked and walked straight to the psych ward and/or liquor store, Ben calmly walked back into the hospital and disposed of the brain shrapnel in a biohazard container. And if you think we're trying to shock you by starting with the worst anecdote, oh boy are you in for a treat. Here's something Paul saw: "A guy walked into the ER after a car wreck, saying, 'My neck kind of hurts.' When the scan came back, the attending [doctor] runs into the room and starts barking orders. 'Don't let this guy move another f*****g inch!' The base of the skull rests on top of the first cervical vertebra, called 'the atlas,' and this patient had essentially dislocated his skull off the atlas. If he had turned his head quickly to look at something, his skull would've slipped off the shattered atlas and sheared through the spinal cord, killing him instantly. This is known as internal decapitation."
Journal of bone & Joint Surgery
Which, as terrifying injuries go, is right up there with internal castration.
Oh, but those are the more existentially troubling stories. We have not yet ventured into the straight-up disgusting. "One of the most challenging conditions to care for," Ben said, "is an infection called Clostridium difficile. Its main effect is to cause severe diarrhea. The stool is so watery that it becomes a nearly-constant leakage, yet it's so mucousy that it's quite sticky and difficult to clean. Plus, it has a distinctive, extremely foul odor that tends to linger in the nostrils for hours or days afterward."
At least you can take brain-shoes off.