Scientist Studying Chinese Virus Prevention Hospitalized with Magnets Stuck Up Nose

NAHARIYA, ISRAEL - AUGUST 03: An ambulance driver waits in front of the emergency room of the Nahariya hospital August 3, 2006 in Nahariya, Israel. On July 28th a Hezbollah missile landed on the fourth floor crippling a wing of the Nahariya hospital. Patients were moved to its bomb-proof basement …
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An Australian astrophysicist was hospitalized with magnets stuck up his nose while trying to create a necklace that will warn people when they touch their face so that they don’t become infected with the Chinese virus.

Australian astrophysicist Daniel Reardon was hospitalized after getting four magnets stuck up his nose while trying to invent a device that would help prevent people avoid behaviors associated with contracting the Wuhan coronavirus such as touching their face, according to a report by the Guardian.

“I have some electronic equipment but really no experience or expertise in building circuits or things,” said Reardon to Guardian Australia.

“I thought that if I built a circuit that could detect the magnetic field, and we wore magnets on our wrists, then it could set off an alarm if you brought it too close to your face. A bit of boredom in isolation made me think of that,” he added.

The report added that the 27-year-old astrophysicist, who is a research fellow at a Melbourne university, had been creating a necklace that sounds an alarm when the wearer touches their face.

“I accidentally invented a necklace that buzzes continuously unless you move your hand close to your face,” said Reardon.

“After scrapping that idea, I was still a bit bored, playing with the magnets,” he added. “It’s the same logic as clipping pegs to your ears — I clipped them to my earlobes and then clipped them to my nostril and things went downhill pretty quickly when I clipped the magnets to my other nostril.”

The astrophysicist said that he had placed two magnets inside his nose, and then two on the outside, and that when he removed the magnets from the outside of his nose, the two inside had gotten stuck together.

Then, Reardon then decided to use his two remaining magnets to try to remove the magnets inside his nose, according to the Guardian.

“At this point, my partner who works at a hospital was laughing at me,” said Reardon. “I was trying to pull them out, but there is a ridge at the bottom of my nose you can’t get past.”

“After struggling for 20 minutes, I decided to Google the problem and found an article about an 11-year-old boy who had the same problem,” added the astrophysicist. “The solution in that was more magnets — to put on the outside to offset the pull from the ones inside.”

Reardon noted that he tried to add more magnets, but they, too got stuck in his nose, and he couldn’t add more magnets because he “ran out of magnets.”

“As I was pulling downwards to try and remove the magnets, they clipped on to each other and I lost my grip,” said Reardon. “And those two magnets ended up in my left nostril while the other one was in my right.”

“At this point, I ran out of magnets,” he added.

So then, the astrophysicist attempted to remove the magnets with a pair of pliers, only to have those become magnetized to the magnets inside his nose as well.

“Every time I brought the pliers close to my nose, my entire nose would shift towards the pliers and then the pliers would stick to the magnet. It was a little bit painful at this point.”

From there, Reardon said that his partner took him to the hospital because “she wanted all her colleagues to laugh at me.”

“The doctors thought it was quite funny, making comments like ‘This is an injury due to self-isolation and boredom.'” said the astrophysicist.

Two doctors ended up manually removing the magnets using an anesthetic spray, reports the Guardian.

“When they got the three out from the left nostril, the last one fell down my throat,” said Reardon. “That could have been a bit of a problem if I swallowed or breathed it in, but I was thankfully able to lean forward and cough it out.”

“Needless to say I am not going to play with the magnets any more,” he added.

You can follow Alana Mastrangelo on Twitter at @ARmastrangelo, and on Instagram.

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