Li Fuyan said a robber had stabbed him on the right side of his jaw. For years, Li had suffered from severe headaches and had trouble breathing, but didn't know it was because a knife blade was stuck inside his head, reported The Associated Press.
"As time passed, I used injections to kill the pain in my head and ears," Li, 30, told Chinese state TV. "It has been four years already."
The hospital announced on Friday that the surgery was successful, calling it a "miracle."
"We checked his mouth, but no wound or scar has been found. It is very strange as to how the blade got into his head," Xu Wen, an official at the hospital, told Chinese state TV.
The rusty blade doctors removed from Li Fuyan's head. Imaginechina via AP. CLICK HERE FOR MORE IMAGES OF INCREDIBLE X-RAYS.
While shocking, Li's case is far from unusual.
In fact, one of Li's countrymen once had to have a pair of scissors removed from his esophagus two years ago.
In April 2009, a Colorado man coughed up a nail that had been stuck up his nose for three decades.
Also in 2009, a 2-year-old Brazilian boy was found living with 50 sewing needles lodged throughout his body.
And back in 2004, doctors in France found 350 coins in a man's stomach.
Dr. Eugene Flamm, a New York-based neurosurgeon, expressed amazement that Li is still alive.
"Maybe out of sheer luck this knife passed through" without damaging vital organs, Flamm said, noting that X-rays showed the blade was embedded just behind Li's throa