PESHAWAR, PAKISTAN (AFP) – A pregnant Pakistani woman had a nail hammered into her head by a faith healer who said it would guarantee she gave birth to a boy, a doctor said yesterday.
Exploitative faith healers, whose practices are rooted in mystic lore, are common across Pakistan.
In South Asia, a son is often believed to offer better financial security to parents than daughters.
The woman arrived at a hospital in the northwestern city of Peshawar after trying to extract the nail herself with pliers, doctor Haider Khan told AFP.
“She was fully conscious, but was in immense pain,” said Khan, who removed the spike.
The mother of three daughters said she was pregnant with another girl, the doctor added.
An X-ray showed the five-centimetre (two-inch) nail had pierced the top of the woman’s forehead but missed her brain.
Khan said a hammer or other heavy object was used to knock it in.