Japanese woman's body burned during surgery due to body flatulence

Posted at 8:44 AM, Nov 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-01 10:56:45-04

A woman in Japan is recovering from sustaining burns all over her body during recent surgery because of flatulence.

The woman was having surgery on her cervix at the Tokyo Medical University Hospital in Shinjuku Ward, reports Washington Post,when she passed gas and it ignited a flame.

Doctors were using lasers in the surgery, which allegedly ignited the gas, causing the blaze. The fire then caught the surgical drape on fire before spreading to the woman’s skin. Most of her body was burned, from her waist and down to her legs, reports Washington Post.

The woman’s current condition is unknown at this time.

A statement was issued by the hospital following the incident citing that the equipment used in the operation did not malfunction.

Washington Post shared the statement that said “When the patient’s intestinal gas leaked into the space of the operation [room], it ignited with the irradiation of the laser, and the burning spread, eventually reaching the surgical drape and causing the fire.” 

The report noted that the issue could have stemmed from the possibility that the woman’s intestines might have had a lot of methane in her system. Methane buildups in the intestines come from eating lots of foods containing methane, like kale, broccoli or cabbage.

Washington Post noted that this type of situation is not likely to happen. They cited Robert Provine’s book “Curious Behavior: Yawning, Laughing, Hiccupping, and Beyond,” which states about a third of people produce “combustible levels of methane” in their gas.