In the fall of 1996 our son was a junior at Thomas Jefferson High School and played violin in the orchestra. DH was supposed to be a chaperone on an orchestra trip. At the very last minute it was determined that there were more than enough chaperones, so DH came home with me from the airport.
Good thing. A few hours later, he woke me up with very intense abdominal pain. We headed immediately to the ER. Testing showed that DH had a hole and a massive infection in his intestine that required immediate surgery.
Even though it was very early on a Sunday morning, DH was trying to make a call on the wall phone of the ER room (no cell yet) while the techs were trying to roll him off to surgery. The surgeon later revealed to me that DH had about 15 minutes or so before the infection would have become unstoppable.
DH had a large chunk of his intestine removed and ended up with a colostomy bag (which was later removed in another surgery).
It was later learned that DH had diverticulitis. He had been doing a martial arts exercise which involves pushing on one’s abdomen – and pushed hard enough on the weakened intestine so that the hole was started.
I guess without the martial arts exercise, the infection could have taken a complete hold…