BOSTON — A man is warning people against using wireless earbud headphones while falling asleep after health care workers had to remove one from his esophagus.
Worcester, Massachusetts, resident Bradford Gauthier, who detailed his bizarre experience in a Facebook post, went to bed Monday listening to music. He woke up Tuesday, shoveled snow for about an hour and then went inside to take a sip of water. But the liquid wouldn't go down, and he had to lean over to drain it from his throat.
Gauthier also noticed he was missing one of his two Apple AirPod earbuds, which he said typically uses as he falls asleep.
Gauthier's son suggested that perhaps his father had swallowed the earbud, which is exactly what an X-ray at a local emergency clinic revealed. The small plastic device was lodged in his lower esophagus.
"Sure enough I had an AirPod lodged in the lower part of my esophagus. I just had an emergency Endoscopy to get it removed," Gauthier wrote in his post.
Gauthier said he never experienced more than minor discomfort. He told NBC Boston 10 that he wanted to share his experience to caution others not to sleep with their headphones.
"Be careful listening to wireless headphones when you fall asleep," he warned on Facebook, "you never know where they'll end up!"
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