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Teen's missing boutonniere pin found in prom date's bronchial tube

By Ben Hooper
Teen's missing boutonniere pin found in prom date's bronchial tube
A Massachusetts high school student inhaled a pin before prom and was found to have evaded injury when it was removed the following day. Screenshot: CBS Boston

WELLESLEY, Mass., May 31 (UPI) -- A Massachusetts high school student went to a doctor the day after prom to remove the boutonniere pin she accidentally inhaled before the party.

Kathleen Garvey, a senior at Wellesley High School, said her prom date, Colin Emerson, was having trouble keeping his boutonniere from falling off during the bus ride to prom so she placed the pin in her mouth while adjusting the floral arrangement.

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"He made some funny joke and I laughed and inhaled it but wasn't positive that's what had happened," she told WFXT-TV. "I wasn't in pain or anything, and the only thing happening was I was coughing so I just assumed it went missing."

Garvey said she wasn't sure if the pin had ended up inside her body or on the floor.

"Colin just stared at me and whispered 'Oh my god where did it go?!'" she told The Swellesley Report blog. "I stared back terrified and started coughing. Our friends nearby heard, and in a matter of seconds everyone in the bus knew and was in between hysterical laughter and absolute panic. I had no idea what to do."

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The teenager said she was eventually satisfied that the pin had been lost on the floor of the bus and she went on to the prom, where she ate and drank without any pain or discomfort.

"I went to the prom, we were dancing. I slept over a friend's and went to an after party afterwards and was totally fine," she said.

Garvey's mother took her to the doctor the following day as a precaution, and an X-ray quickly revealed the pin's hiding place.

"It went down my throat, down my trachea and in my bronchial tube right before my lung," Garvey told WBZ-TV.

Doctors were able to remove the pin with a scope and determined there was no damage to the teenager's body.

"They were amazed, absolutely amazed that through the whole night with dancing and partying there was no damage done. It was sitting there, right there," said Garvey's father, John Garvey.

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