Man Eats Ghost Pepper So Hot It Rips His Esophagus
A man taking part in a food eating contest and was challenged to eat a hamburger with ghost pepper puree. The pepper was so hot it ripped a 2.5-cm hole in the man’s esophagus.
Physicians at the University of California at San Francisco noted that after ingesting the burger and pepper the man tried to ease the heat by drinking six glasses of water. When that failed to help he then tried vomiting which resulted in abdominal pain.
He was taken to the emergency room where he was given Maalox and painkillers. When his condition didn’t improve surgeons moved him to an operating room where they discovered a “2.5-cm tear in the distal esophagus.” The force from vomiting led to Boerhaave’s syndrome; these spontaneous tears in the esophagus can be fatal if they are not diagnosed and treated.
Surgeons were able to repair the hole, and by day 17 in the hospital he was able to tolerate liquids. By day 23 he was released and sent home with a gastric tube in place.
The Ghost Pepper
The ghost pepper originally hails from India and is known as one of the spiciest foods in the world. The pepper comes in at third place on Guinness World Records’ list of the world’s hottest chilies.
The pepper is also named but jolokia. It ranks at 1 million on the Scoville Scale, a system for measuring the spiciness of different substances. A bell pepper is zero units on the scale, the Scotch Bonnet is 350,000 units and the world’s hottest pepper, the Carolina Reaper, is 1.5 million units.
Just a seed from one of the ghost peppers can cause a face to smolder for up to half an hour. On YouTube faces broken by the “ghost pepper challenge” devolve into tears, runny noses and hiccups.