6-inch screw pierces boy's skull in treehouse-building accident

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Caption
Boy’s Skull Pierced by 6-Inch Screw

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Days before his 13th birthday, a Maryland boy was nearly killed after a wooden board with a screw in it fell onto his head Saturday, embedding the screw between the two halves of his brain as he was building a treehouse, according to a report from CNN.

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An X-ray of Darius Foreman's injury showed the 6-inch screw dangerous close to the channel that drains fluids from the brain, CNN reported. Darius's surgeon, Dr. Alan Cohen, told CNN that the injury could have been "catastrophic."

“He was a millimeter away from having himself bleed to death,” Cohen, who serves as chief of pediatric neurosurgery at John Hopkins Hospital, told the news network. “He’s a lucky kid.”

Darius was taken to John Hopkins by helicopter after he fell from a branch Saturday while building a treehouse. His fall dislodged the wooden board, which then hit him, his mother Joy Elingsworth told CNN.

“It was very scary -- one of the scariest things I’ve ever been through,” Ellingsworth said.

Authorities responding to the scene had to cut the board, which was still attached to Darius by the screw in his head, from 5 to 2 feet before they were able to fit him into a helicopter to take him to John Hopkins. He underwent two hours of surgery Sunday to remove the screw, CNN reported.

"We were on pins and needles" during the surgery, Cohen told CNN, adding that he had to remove a small blood clot and tiny fragments of bone during the surgery.

“He’s a lucky kid,” Cohen told the news network.

CNN reported that Darius kept the screw from the accident, "a memory of his close call and a gift from the hospital on his 13th birthday -- the day he was discharged."