A man who regularly suffered a blocked nose can finally breathe easy after he sneezed out the cause – part of a toy dart that had been stuck up a nostril for more than 40 years.
Steve Easton, 51, often had a case of the sniffles or a headache and put it down to hay fever. But his nasal passages are now clear for the first time since childhood after one big blow cleared the problem.
As he sat at his computer he sneezed and out flew the sucker tip of a toy dart, about the size of a penny coin. Easton told his mother, Pat, and was amazed to find that at the age of seven his parents had taken him to hospital after they thought he had inhaled the dart.
“I started a sneezing fit and it came out of my left nostril,” said Easton, of Camberley in Surrey. “I thought, ‘What’s this? Where the hell has this come from?’ and pulled out this rubber sucker.
I spoke to my mum and she said, ‘Oh yes, we took you to hospital when you were seven because we thought you had inhaled one.’”
His mother and father, Quentin, both 77, of Buckinghamshire, had found little Steve playing with his dart gun at their home in Camberley, and noticed one of the rubber tips was missing.
Mrs Easton said: “There was just one of these darts without a tip. I took him to the hospital and they spent a lot of time looking for it but in the end they said perhaps it was a mistake. I knew it wasn’t and it’s always worried me and now it has suddenly shot out. We are all shocked.”
Easton has suffered from the sniffles all his life but as far as he is aware the sucker has caused him no other health issues.
“I brought it up with my doctor and he was amazed like everybody else but said there had been no harm done. It’s just one of those things,” he said. “It had been there in my nasal cavity for 44 years. I was completely unaware that it was in my nose for that long. I feel no different now. I wonder if there’s anything else up there.”