WEIRD NEWS
07/21/2011 08:30 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Dez Heal: 13-Year-Old Boy Impaled With Large Bamboo Pole -- And Survives (GRAPHIC PHOTO, VIDEO)

Dez Heal, a 13-year-old Virginia boy, is lucky to be alive after he was impaled by a bamboo stick through the neck, WSET-13 reports.

Heal and his friends were imagining themselves as ninjas, WSET's Mark Kelly reports, when Heal put the bamboo "spear" in his shirt. When he jumped, the bamboo stick pierced the right side of his neck.

(Warning: Graphic Photo And Video Below)

Even though the stick was impaled in Heal's neck for five hours before doctors removed it, Heal's injuries were not life-threatening. According to the New York Daily News, doctors on Monday took out a drainage tube from the teen's neck.

ABC News spoke to physicians who advise that in situations such as Heal's, it's best not to try to remove the impaled object yourself. "If it is going through an artery, if you pull it out, the leak may explode," Dr. Paul Pepe, chairman of emergency medicine at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, told ABC News.

In May, 28-year-old Andrew Lin survived when a 2-inch diameter fencepost went through his head as he was driving. Doctors called Lin's survival a "miracle" as the pipe managed to miss his carotid artery, spine and jugular vein.

For the full report, read the story at WSET-13.

Watch the report from ABC News: