Ig Nobel Prize Winners in Medicine

I love everything about the Ig Nobel Prize Awards.  Their motto is “Achievements that make people laugh, then think” – which is sort of the best thing ever, right?

So I’m going to give a run-down of all the past winners, broken up into completely arbitrary categories of my own sleep-deprived choosing.

I Would’ve Loved to be at That IRB Meeting

2006:  “Termination of Intractable Hiccups by Digital Rectal Massage” (A strangely popular concept.)

2005:  The invention of Neuticles: Fake Testicles for Neutered Dogs.

2002:  “Scrotal Asymmetry in Man and in Ancient Sculpture

2001: “Injuries Due To Falling Coconuts” (Published in The Journal of Trauma!  Which is apparently a thing!)

1999:  “Collecting, cataloging, and contemplating” the different types of containers patients use for urine samples.  (Out of 164 samples, the best is definitely the roll-on deodorant.)

1995: “The Effects of Unilateral Forced Nostril Breathing on Cognition

I Would Totally Read That Study

2007:  The side-effects of swallowing swords. (For example, the gag reflex is a problem.)

2004:  The Effect of Country Music on Suicide.  (Money quote:  “The greater the airtime devoted to country music, the greater the white suicide rate.”)

2000: “Magnetic Resonance Imaging of Male and Female Genitals During Coitus and Female Sexual Arousal.”  (What?  And you wouldn’t?  C’mon, it’s an MRI.)

Useful Info with Funny Titles

2010: Symptoms of asthma can be alleviated by riding on rollercoasters.

2008:  Expensive placebos work better than inexpensive placebos

2003:  The hippocampi of London taxi drivers are more highly developed.  (I have been to London, and I am not surprised by this.)

1998:  The Man who Pricked His Finger and Smelt Putrid for Five Years.

1997:  Listening to Muzak stimulates your immune system

1993:  “Acute Management of the Zipper-Entrapped Penis


That’s Dedication

2009:  Donald Unger, an allergist/immunologist, won the Medicine prize for personally investigating the claim that knuckle-cracking causes arthritis by cracking the knuckles of only one hand, daily, for six decades.
And finally:

Nice Try

1996: Presented to tobacco company scientists for “their unshakeable discovery, as revealed in sworn testimony to the U.S. Congress, that nicotine is not addictive.”

3 thoughts on “Ig Nobel Prize Winners in Medicine

  1. working as a med tech, my all time favorite urine specimen container. Urine for a pregnancy test in a baby bottle complete with nipple top.

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