One thing Doug Bergeson hadn’t considered when attempting to build his own fireplace was having to go to the hospital. The 52-year-old man had been using a nail gun to secure the fireplace’s frame when it suddenly fired without warning. It had been an accident, but the gun sent a 3-inch nail off of the building materials nearby and sent the nail directly into his chest. At first, he didn’t realize what had happened.
There was a small amount of stinging pain, but he couldn’t see anything. He took off his shirt and saw less than an inch of the nail sticking through his chest. When he noticed that the nail was “pulsing” along with his heartbeat, he knew that it was probably safest to leave the nail right were it was.
His initial reaction? Annoyance. He’d never finish the fireplace now that he had to make a trip to see a doctor.
He got into his truck and drove 12 miles, stopping to park his truck before walking into the ER. Once inside, the adrenaline of the event began to wear off and he finally needed to sit down.
The x-ray shocked the doctors: the nail was embedded in his heart and was 1/16 of an inch away from a major artery that could have killed him within minutes.
They needed to rush him another hospital – and he offered to drive himself again! They refused his offer and he spent two days in the hospital before returning home.
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