A man from Maine has been in the hospital for over a week now after being admitted for hiccups. The 39-year-old father of four was delivering packages for UPS when he began hiccuping. According to the man’s wife, Keri Cheney, her husband just assumed that the hiccups would go away but these proved not to be ordinary hiccups.
Mike Cheney continued hiccuping throughout the rest of the day and the entire night. Then he began vomiting. It was at that point that Cheney’s wife decided that he needed to go to the hospital. Doctors prescribed Cheney with mediation but that did not end his hiccuping. Cheney even tried traditional approaches to getting rid of hiccups by trying different breath-holding techniques. Nothing worked. Cheney checked into the Maine Medical Center in Portland and has has been there ever since.
Cheney’s wife says that her husband was in perfect health before this condition set in. Now Cheney has lost 14 pounds from vomiting around ten times a day. There are times when Cheney’s body gets a short break from the hiccups, but those times are short-lived. Doctors are giving Cheney sedatives to help him sleep at night.
Hiccups occur due to a spasming of the diaphragm. The windpipe involuntarily contracts after a spasm causes the body to inhale. A study that was published in 2002 from the Journal of the National Medical Association shows that over 4000 people a year are hospitalized because of hiccups. Hiccups can be a reaction to nerve damage, stress, drugs, tumors or infections.