It wasn't until Shepherd and the other doctors did a CT scan that they discovered an object had punctured several places in the woman's small intestine.
The woman, who is in her 30s, went to her local hospital in Australia complaining about cramping and serious abdominal pain.
A decade after her braces were taken out, a woman needed to have a piece of dental wire removed from her intestine.
That puzzled her doctors, who said it was unusual that the decade-old piece of her braces just now started causing pain.
The 30-year-old woman was examined by doctors, who found a dental wire from the woman's braces, which had been removed 10 years prior. After being discharged during her first visit, she later came back with even more pain. But when she returned two days later with worsening pain, a CT scan revealed "something metallic" was poking into "quite a large loop of dilated, unhappy bowel", Dr. Talia Shepherd tells ABC Radio Perth and Popular Science. "So, people swallow fish bones and then perforate through the bowel and I thought possible that's what it was".
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Gastroenterologist Dr. Pat Raymond said that it was odd that the patient didn't remember swallowing the wire.
"It's incredibly common in my professions to see people who have swallowed things", said Raymond, adding that the objects swallowed would often vary depending on whether patients had swallowed them by mistake or on objective.
Since the woman was feeling extreme pain, doctors chose to operate on the woman and remove the foreign object.
Fortunately, the wire didn't cause any severe damage to the woman's stomach.
"She is now well and carrying on with her life", Dr. Shepherd said.