Sword Swallowing Risks Hard to Stomach

One swallower in the study tore his throat while trying to swallow a curved saber. Another swallower -- after getting distracted by a macaw on his shoulder -- cut his esophagus and then developed inflammation in the lining of his lung.

A female swallower who was also a belly dancer suffered major bleeding when an audience member pushed dollar bills into her belt, which caused the three blades in her esophagus to scissor.

"It is not just a trick. It is extremely dangerous," said Meyer.

Thinking about Sword Swallowing?

For those daring souls contemplating sword swallowing, the experts have these words of advice for you.

"I would advise them not to do sword swallowing," said Witcombe.

"Don't do it. Don't try it. The risk of sword swallowing hurting or killing us is high," said Meyer.

So, why would anyone risk their lives to perform this art in the first place?

"On television today, we see so many gimmicks and illusions," said Meyer. "I do it because it's real.

"It's fun to watch people's faces in complete disbelief, and for them to appreciate how incredible the human body is."

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