July 28, 2021

Fisherman swallowed and spat out by whale? Doctor doubts and explains why

MIchael Packard, the 57-year-old American who said he was swallowed by a whale and then spat out on Friday morning, is being questioned by experts interviewed by the New York Post.

The lobster fisherman, who indicated that he was diving off Cape Cod, Massachusetts, when the incident happened: he was swallowed by a whaleboat, went “completely dark” for a few seconds, and then was regurgitated to the surface. On the same day, he received treatment at a local hospital. One of the doctors expressed skepticism about the story he heard – not just him, but the world press, as the news was eventually reproduced by newspapers like the Washington Post or the BBC.

“He said he allegedly was regurgitated from a depth of 45 feet [13,7 metros] between 20 and 40 seconds and did not sustain any kind of barotrauma?” asked the emergency room physician, who preferred to remain anonymous.

Barotrauma, it should be noted, is any tissue injury caused by a change in pressure within the body.

According to the expert, a person who had survived such trauma should have suffered far more serious injuries, such as hearing loss, because of the sudden change in water pressure. The man, however, was discharged the same day, just hours after the incident, suffering only superficial injuries, as if by a miracle.

Some fishermen heard by the newspaper also doubt the story. “People who are in the fishing industry, and people who know whales, find this very hard to believe. It would be the first time this would happen,” said a fisherman who has worked in the same area for 44 years.

The newspaper tried to contact Packard for a reaction, but to no avail.

Read Also: Fishermen Find 1.2 Million Fortune in Sperm Whale Carcass

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