Australian Scientist Gets Magnets Stuck in His Nose While Trying to Work on Coronavirus Device

"Needless to say I am not going to play with the magnets any more." 

An example of a Neodymium magnet.

Image via Getty/Universal History Archive/Universal Images Group

An example of a Neodymium magnet.

Dr. Daniel Reardon, 27, was admitted to a hospital in Australia last week after he accidentally got four magnets stuck in his nose, CNN reports. Reardon, an astrophysicist based in Melbourne, thought he would try to utilize his time in self-isolation by creating a sensor that could tell when your hands were close to your face. The CDC suggests that people can avoid the spread of coronavirus by avoiding contact with their eyes, nose, and mouth. 

Reardon thought he could build a necklace that would sound an alarm when it detects the magnets on a person's wrist. He soon realized that his invention produced the opposite effect, and only buzzed when he didn't have his hand close to his face. "I had a laugh and gave up temporarily," he said. "Then I started mindlessly placing the magnets on my face. First my ear lobes, then my nostrils -- like a magnetic piercing."

Reardon said he placed two magnets inside his nostrils, and two on the outside. When he removed the magnets from the outside of his nose, the two inside got stuck together. "The problem was when I put magnets in my other nostril," he said. "They all pinched together and the ones on my septum got stuck." With three magnets lodged in his nostrils, Reardon tried using pliers as a last-ditch effort to remove them, but that didn't go so well either. 

"Every time I brought the pliers close to my nose, my entire nose would shift towards the pliers and then the pliers would stick to the magnet," he recalls, perThe Guardian. "It was a little bit painful at this point." 

Two doctors were needed to successfully remove the magnets from his nose. "When they got the three out from the left nostril, the last one fell down my throat," Reardon said. "That could have been a bit of a problem if I swallowed or breathed it in, but I was thankfully able to lean forward and cough it out … Needless to say I am not going to play with the magnets any more." 

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