A woman in China who arrived at hospital with an itchy ear has stunned doctors who found a spider living inside it.
The spider is believed to have crawled into the ear canal of the woman, known only as Ms Lee, as she slept five days earlier, Chinese news website RedNet reports.
Doctors at the Changsha Central Hospital in Hunan decided against using extracting equipment to remove the spider from Ms Lee's ear because they were worried the barbs on its legs would dig into her skin.
Instead they managed to force the arachnid out with a saline solution.
Ms Lee was reportedly so relieved to be rid of the spider that she almost cried.
University of Florida entomology professor Philip Koehler told the Huffington Post insects crawling into human ears was not just an urban myth and they occasionally did so for shelter.
"The insects are probably entering the canal as harborage, for heat, and/or for moisture," he said.