Lost And (Unfortunately) Found—Strange Things Patients Have Left Behind

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.


It’s not often that one will find a seasoned nurse in a state of even semi-bewilderment. From reaaaalllly questionable injuries to bizarre patient superstitions, veteran nurses have seen, heard and perhaps even touched it all.

So, if a patient checks out of the hospital and leaves behind what we’ll just call a forgotten “token of gratitude” that a nurse deems peculiar, you can bet your bottom dollar that this found item truly is nine different levels of WEIRD. And because we are a glutton for the odd and unexpected, we asked you to dish on all the items you’ve discovered in newly vacant rooms via our Facebook page.

What you shared with us was both outrageous and slightly alarming, and we can’t get enough of it:

“The gall bladder of a skunk!” —Sandra M.

“A spear…not sure how he got it [into the hospital] or why he had it.” —Alisa S.

“A vibrator, LOL.” —Lisa A.

“A number and business card with my name written on it, as well as another colleague’s…then I found out he was a stripper.” —Chante L.

“Their own bag of spices! They brought a bag full of seasoning and spices with them when they rolled into the emergency room because they thought the hospital food was so terrible. Clearly an emergency if you have time to round up a bag full of spices on your way out of the house…” —Kat T.

“A leather zip-up S&M mask that was in the shape of a rabbit with fangs…the person came back to retrieve it and we had to fish it out of the trash. He said, ‘It was custom-made for a leather pageant and I paid $2,000 for it.'” —Toni R.

“A prosthetic eye. Damn near tore the hospital down looking for the thing.” —Stephanie H.

“A sack of onions. Another time a guy left behind a note for me inviting me to his trailer.” —Laura A.

“Their cellphone with lots of (their) herpes pictures.” —Bryan Q.

“A tooth in the drawer!” —Jessie M.

“A pot. Not sure why they brought it in the first place, LOL.” —Sharon D.

“A can of cat food.” —Maureen L.

“A dirty sock with $650 in it.” —Jill B.

“10 kg of bananas.” —Kezza W.

What about you? Has a former patient left an unusual item behind for YOU to discover? Tell us about it in the comments section below!

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.



  1. Patient left behind a marijuana plant. This was in the ‘70s. We knew what it was but we called it our maple leaf tree. It does sort of look like it. We had it at the nurses desk for a few weeks then it just disappeared and no one knew where it went

  2. While clearing the patient’s room for housekeeping to clean before the next admission I found a live rifle bullet! Of course it was hunting season in a rural community hospital but seriously, this was in a pediatric patient’s room. I called security to come and retrieve the ammunition:)

  3. In the busy ER I worked in, someone once left a prosthetic leg, which we propped up in the nurses station. How do you forget your leg??

    • Thanks actually the whole story began earlier that week. I was at the nurse’s station when a patient’s wife passed by carrying a large cardboard box. A few minutes later the patient’s call light went on. I went into his room and the patient asked me if I would give the box to the doctor. I must have looked puzzled. The patient said, “He told me to have my wife bring in all my old records.” Then he goes and leaves them behind and the nurse’s aid was one to ask him again why he had them in hospital. She then told me this story again. It really was hysterical and the story has continued on and on since the late 1980’s. It was published in Journal of Nursing Jocularity as well

  4. Patient left a collection of 78 and 45 rpm records like those played on a record player. When asked why he had them with him in hospital. Response: “My doctor told my wife to bring in my old records.”


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