This was one of NZH Lifestyle's top stories for 2017
• Warning: Graphic and explicit content
A young woman has spoken about how she had to have a four-inch sex toy surgically removed from her bum in a bid to warn others to get medical help for embarrassing misadventures - after it almost left her needing a colostomy bag.
Emily Georgia*, 20, from Sussex in the UK, was enjoying some bedroom fun with a male acquaintance in March when a stainless steel sex toy became stuck inside her.
After attempts to manually retrieve it failed, Emily says the man suggested leaving it to naturally work its way out and then scarpered claiming he had work early the following morning.
A concerned friend rushed her to hospital, where doctors warned Emily that there was a risk of it perforating her bowl due to a sharp edge and that she faced an hour-long surgery.
A wince-inducing x-ray shows just how dangerously high in Emily's bowel the sex toy had ventured.
Emily, who works as a carer in West Sussex, is now speaking out to warn others that embarrassment shouldn't stop those who find themselves in similar predicaments from seeking medical help urgently.
She said: "We were having a naughty night in last March and decided to use the toy - I'd never used one before.
"I think he got too excited and managed to push the end of it in too. It was a goner.
"I began to panic and told him I needed to go to hospital. He said it should come out naturally on the toilet and then he said 'I'm really sorry I have work early in the morning' and he shot off.
"My housemate didn't believe me at first but when I began to get upset she realised I wasn't taking the mickey."
The pair rushed to Worthing Hospital and while at A&E Emily scribbled her predicament on a piece of paper and handed it to the receptionist.
Emily said: "I didn't fancy saying it across the reception desk so asked for a pen and paper.
"The receptionist said it happens a lot more often than you think and said she'd heard worse."
Emily was assessed and then went for an x-ray which showed just how high up the sex aid had gone.
Emily said: "I waited for three hours - by this point the pain started to kick in.
"It was already in my bowel bashing me about and because it's made of stainless steel it felt really heavy and uncomfortable.
"I assumed they could get it out manually but it was only when I saw the x-ray did I realise they couldn't and how dangerous it was.
"I'm petrified of needles so when they lay me down and a nurse put a line in I realised they needed to operate. I was terrified."
As she was being wheeled to theatre the following day, doctors told Emily if they couldn't extract it rectally they might have to go through the bowel and take some out which could mean at least six months with a colostomy bag.
The toy also had a fake sharp-edged gem on its base which doctors warned could have perforated her bowel.
Emily said: "Obviously when they said about the colostomy bag I was devastated - I'm only 20.
"I'm a carer and I've seen colostomy bags - they're not pretty, I've never been so frightened.
"When they spoke about the gem and that it could perforate my bowel I was devastated that a night of fun could have killed me."
At 2pm on March 29 Emily underwent hour-long surgery which involved placing a camera inside her before manually extracting it.
Post-surgery nurses offered the toy as a keepsake which she accepted.
Emily said: "When I first woke up I wanted to go back to sleep as I didn't want to look down at my tummy in case they had to cut me open to get to it.
"As they didn't have to go through my stomach I'm guessing they managed to get it out the other way."
She was discharged the following day and tentatively made her way home.
Emily now wants to raise awareness and urge anyone in a similar predicament to seek medical attention.
Emily said: "If anyone is in the same situation I would advise to obviously try and get it out yourself first but then definitely take yourself straight to the hospital if you can.
"It's not as embarrassing as it seems - people at A&E see things like this all the time and will have seen far worse things up people's rectums.
"The hospital staff were amazing - they were so funny and never once made me feel uncomfortable, that's why I find it so easy to talk about."
Worthing Hospital declined to comment.
* Name changed to protect privacy.