A former prisoner who tried to kill himself 20 years ago by swallowing a toothbrush has finally had it removed from his small intestine.

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The toothbrush was nearly unrecognisable and appeared to have completely blackened and the bristles had disintergrated.

The ex con, surnamed Li, went to the doctors after experiencing pain in his abdomen and he was sent for a CT scan in Shenzhen, China.

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Stunned by their discovery, doctors discovered the object lodged in his bile duct and asked how it got there.

They used an endoscope to fish the toothbrush from his intestines.

Li, 51, revealed how he had swallowed the toothbrush in his prison cell two decades ago in a botched suicide attempt.

He had reportedly contracted HIV through his drug use, something for him at the time was too much to cope with.

Surprisingly, the toothbrush did absolutely nothing and Li carried out the rest of his sentence.

The dental tool had completely blackened and the bristles had disintergrated 
Li, 51, swallowed the toothbrush 20 years ago in prison 
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He stopped taking drugs and began HIV treatment and was released from prison with the all clear from HIV negative.Li is now married with two children.

Local media reported that if the toothbrush had stayed inside Li, there was a large chance that it would have reached his liver and led to a fatal infection.