August 13th, 2010
06:52 PM ET

Plant sprouts in man's lung

How can a pea grow in a man’s lung? That's been a water cooler topic for the better part of this week.  It happened to 75-year-old Ron Sveden,  who had a half-inch-long sprout removed from his lung, which was first reported by a 20-year-old news intern at the Cape Cod Times on August 8.

The story was picked up by TV stations, newspapers and websites around the world.

Sveden was very sick when he was hospitalized on Memorial Day – he was having more difficulty breathing than he usually does with his emphysema.

Sveden was expecting to learn he had lung cancer.  Instead, he tells a Boston television station: “I was told that I had a pea seed in my lung that had split and had sprouted.”

Dr. Jeff Spillane removed the obstruction.  He tells CNN at first he couldn't see that a pea had been lodged in the lung because there was so much infected, swollen tissue around it.  "His whole lobe was collapsed and there was pus behind...it was entrapped in what we call granulation tissue."  But once removed, he says it looked like a pea or a bean. “It had a shoot coming out."

Spillane,  a thoracic surgeon at Cape Cod Hospital in Hyannis, Massachusetts,  doesn’t know how long the seed was in Sveden’s lung, but he believes it stayed in the airway because Sveden’s existing lung disease didn’t allow him to breathe very well and he couldn't cough it out.

“Most of the time I'm dealing with pretty devastating illness,” Spillane says.  But this case is different. “He really did get a very good outcome.”

As for the likelihood of something sprouting inside the body, experts say it’s not impossible.  Walter Reeves, a horticulturist, author and radio host in Atlanta, Georgia, says it’s conceivable if a seed gets lodged in a lung.

“Isn't that what happens when a seed is underground and gets moisture and warmth?  They [seeds] don't need light” he adds, at least not for the first two or three days.

Reeves doesn’t have more details about Sveden’s situation than what’s been reported in the news media, but he points out that this could  happen only with raw peas or beans or peanuts.  Cooked peas or other legumes cannot germinate or sprout.  Reeves says a raw peanut could easily sprout, as could dried peas, after soaking in water. “Those are quite capable of germinating.”

Spillane says children, in particular, are known to have a peanuts go down the wrong way and get lodged in the lung, which is a very serious problem.  “Kids have died from that stuff,” he says.

Spillane is a little surprised at all the attention this story had received.  He says removing objects from patients’ lungs happens frequently.  “A week later [after Sveden’s surgery], I pulled a tooth out [of another patient]."

Dr. Steve Georas, a pulmonologist in Rochester, New York, agrees.  He says people inhale things into their lungs frequently, probably because the trachea and the esophagus are so close to each other.  “We had a similar case at the University of Rochester where I practice.  A patient had a pea wedged in his bronchus – it didn't turn into a plant."

Spillane says he went into surgery to help people and to "pull the thorn out of the lion's paw. " Sveden’s sprouting pea, the surgeon says, “was the ultimate thorn in a lion's paw, I guess.”

soundoff (257 Responses)
  1. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    get your sleaze people off my telephone cogeco and the rest of you. stop using my phone from another connection area to mock like you work here, nobody works with me or ever did. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii interpole galactica

    September 7, 2010 at 20:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    if you have an asthma attack drink water to stop it. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    if you're yawning all day and eve almost also start drinking a lot of fluids – juice etc. it's something like hiccups reactions except that with hiccups when you drink fluids you have to hold your breath at the same time for it to work. usually that cures hiccups. occassionally it may not either. theresa noelle younan y-research management.

    September 7, 2010 at 21:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i did run into a bad batch of juice a few weeks ago but it's ok now that juice i was buying. the bad batch tasted like spoiled fruit was used but maybe they threw in some bad poison ingredient that made it taste spoiled because it did make me sick for awhile. theresa noelle younan y-research management i-pic

    September 7, 2010 at 21:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i had to start taking my zantac and iron and sometimes tylenol again to reverse damages. i was using juice to heal stomach damages and it was working for some time. but i guess they didn't like that medical solution treatment happening that way maybe. whatever caused it created over production of digestive enzymes which is equivalent to cancer and may really be what bowel and stomach cancer is that they often do major surgery for . theresa noelle younan ymma-iii interpole galactic i-pic y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    they also do pancreatic surgery to mock cancer when that also is just related to poison, and overproductive digestion enzymes and such. i do have cysts in my liver which for anyone means you have to take iron regularly. food for iron isn't workable. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii i-pic y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    if a doctor specialist takes a long time doing a colonoscopy it means he's putting holes in your stomach and disembowling part or all of you because such an operative type examination is only supposed to take a minute or so. i know one that tried to kill me but because i'm extremely powerfully psychic and whatever he couldn't kill me. but i had heard years ago that they disembowled a woman in the hospital. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii y-research management. that dirty mcguinty and the rest were involved in killing numerous persons in the toronto area as if they had that stupid con game name disease of c-difficile.

    September 7, 2010 at 21:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i mean years before my evidence experience. theresa noelle younan y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    why wouldn't mcguinty and the rest carry out a major inquiry knowing of the suspicious nature of those supposed c-difficile deaths (meaning colon difficulty in frenchy) because he was part of the conspiracy killings like those with HlNl flue and numerous other assault killings on the public using medical crime weaponry. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii y-research management i-pic

    September 7, 2010 at 21:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    Also that earlier one in the 80's or was it 90's that contamination killed in hospitals – i beleive there were two waves of similar death diseases. but they weren't diseases they were medical crime gags. then everybody had to start using that hand antiseptic wash each time they came into hospitals and doctors offices. i think they got that from me questioning how dirty things were especially money/cash and that disinfectant dispensing equipment needed to be installed in banks and cash registers – that was in the early 80's that i discussed that and sent it in as an invention product needing patenting. maybe they got those weirdo exploitive plots from some of that stuff. theresa noelle younan y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rosilene

      Congratulations! There's so much to look forward to over the next few ontmhs. I would recommend getting a few books on pregnancy, like The Girlfriend's guide and What to Expect. Other than that, carbs are really really easy on the stomach. Also bring your prenatal vitamins to your doctor on the first visit to see if it is complete, I went through a couple before my doctor approved of one. E-mail me if you have questions!

      April 9, 2012 at 08:52 | Report abuse |
    • Manal

      Wonder if our Seattle worlds have ever csoersd? Me: thrift-store junkie (obviously, I'm buying everything I need from a Goodwill store this year as a challenge), DIY-er (presented and shopped at Vera, Pratt and of course Craft Uprising) and around the KEXP circles-o-influence.Partner: Manager at the Mecca that is known as Glazer's CameraWe are friends of friends of friends through blogs (Tomboy Style, Miss Moss)

      April 14, 2012 at 13:36 | Report abuse |
  11. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i'm sure that's also where the debit card got cut in too. theresa noelle younan y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 21:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Denzel

      Congratulations!Preganancy is a funny thing. I had one sister-in-law who never felt etetbr in her life than when she was expecting, and my other sister-in-law was like you. She had morning sickness that lasted morning, noon and night. I guess it just effects different people differently, but in the end both had happy, healthy babies.I had medical issues that prevented me from having children, but I'm sure it must be a wonderful experience. And remember, it only lasts a few months.

      April 8, 2012 at 02:02 | Report abuse |
    • Larissa

      Yea! Celebrate Lots! I know you will find new reasons as the years go by to roecije in your life together! Continue to have all the fun and laughter that you have right now! All our love, Mom and Dad

      April 14, 2012 at 14:11 | Report abuse |
  12. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    now there is this kind of natzi brown party group of security people under group4S based in Denmark supposedly, so they say, and they raped a patient – one i know of as if she needed subdueing with her clothes almost all off in a separate room. security guards aren't supposed to handle patients, only nurses are supposed to subdue a patient if they're getting kind of violent. it wasn't a big girl though a little overweight. security guards in hospitals are like for maybe some kind of riot situation or someone running in with a gun or something. I wonder if those guards are in Henry Ford's Hospital too. i think they were part of another security guard group maybe pinkerton and burns but i'm not sure. that firm was supposedly protecting abraham lincoln way back. how did he get assassinated do you think. i 'm pretty sure he didn't have a baby by a black mistress like they record in history. my psychic historical ability doesn't agree with that.

    September 7, 2010 at 22:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    part of me beleives they are Ford Motor Company's security company for other reasons. But Pinkerton and Burns were the security company for a world's Fair maybe new yorks' way back. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii i-pic interpole galactica. weaver's expo world's fair

    September 7, 2010 at 22:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i beleive they murder people in their homes also those group4S guys because of something they did to me in my home. interpole galactica i-pic. plus i beleive they kill nurses who may want to talk about what's happening like the one in orangeville whose body remains they recently found. y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 22:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    though another point needs noting there were no security guards of such kind back in 1969-70 when i had surgery at age 12-13 and they raped me under anaesthetic but the police don't want to investigate that direclty but want to pretend it was two french women of recent times raped like that at York hospital.

    September 7, 2010 at 22:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    there is a lot of facts well researched i also have about lung disease – related also to phoney blame on smoking and such and self evident information.
    everybody everywhere is entitled to $300. a month automatically keyed into their bank account and everyone should have an automatic bank account. Originally i decided everyone should have $1042.00 a month – what is given in Canada to disability pension and such persons. I called it a Gratuitous Base Income – GBI or BIG in inverted acronyms or GIB like the singer. sing a long. except its not falsetto singing with streisand garbage. I decided students would also be granted that from age 17. Maybe we can start by October 1./010 with $300 for everyone including newborns. This means all other payments or benefits normally and presently paid do not get cut or affected by this Gratuitous Base Income payment. Theresa Noelle Younan YMMA-III Interpole Galactica I-PIC This has been my plan from before last year's christmas.

    September 7, 2010 at 22:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    Every child/person though i'm not sure about all country areas does start out with a baby bonus, which the mother spends for it but it shouldn't really work that way and it should continue to the time of death. IT should also apply to everyone irrigardless of income status and other status. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii i-pic interpole galactica y-research management.

    September 7, 2010 at 23:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mickey Mud Turtle

      "Irrigardless" isn't a word.

      September 10, 2010 at 08:44 | Report abuse |
  18. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    i also beleive that each person's account should be made available to their spending control at age 8, and before that in the mother and/or father's trustee control. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii i-pic interpole galactica y-research management

    September 7, 2010 at 23:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    The Gratuitous Base Income also cannot be touched or seized in a credit collection activity or legal proceeding. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii i-pic interpole galactica

    September 7, 2010 at 23:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. YounanMarketingAndManagementAssociatesInc, Int'l Intst'r

    and of course it's not taxable or tax affected or considered as part of total income etc. theresa noelle younan ymma-iii interpole galactica i-pic

    September 7, 2010 at 23:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Alexandru

    I feel your pain! I remember only being able to eat lpapes with Daniel and I would give the core to the dog for her teeth. We both ended up with tummy discomfort from too much fruit. Haha! I also would chug Emetrol at work. I lost a lot of weight in the first trimester and John brought me the most disgusting, yet calorie-loaded smoothie he could find. The strawberry, peanut butter smoothie was NOT what my body wanted. With Megan, I carried baby carrots in my pocket and just made myself munch. With Meredith, I didn't have any one thing that worked. I just gagged day and night. Once I could finally eat, all I wanted was Chick-fil-A. For over a year I went there 4 or 5 times a week. Lol! In each case, my sickness passed at about 13 weeks. After that, I felt soooo much better and started feeling so sexy! You will love that! It's amazing how your blood sugar is your best friend or worst enemy. If you don't eat, it falls and you feel horrible, pregnant or not. Try to keep something in and keep that level up. This soon shall pass and be a distant memory. I'm so excited for this new journey for the two of you. I know you are already singing to the baby. Much love to you!

    April 8, 2012 at 00:41 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.