A Canadian man who finally got a good handle on an annoying itch he'd been scratching at for the past three years accidentally uncovered the source of irritation: A knife blade that got stuck in his back in 2010.

Billy McNeely, a 32-year-old who lives near the appropriately named city of Yellowknife, remembers well the night he got stabbed.

He was attending a birthday party in his honor when an arm-wrestling contest resulted in a fight that ended with him being shanked five times.

McNeely says the doctors who stitched him up never ordered any X-rays, which is how the blade was missed.

But the subsequent pain and irritation couldn't be ignored. "I always had back pains," McNeely told the Canadian Press. "There was always a burning feeling with it."

One night earlier this week, while rubbing and scratching at the lump in his back, McNeely suddenly hit something sharp.

"My girlfriend got up and she started playing around with it and she manoeuvred my back in a certain way and the tip of a blade poked out of my skin," he recalled.

McNeely rushed to the hospital, where doctors found a seven-centimeter-long (2.5") blade lodged in his back.

Though McNeely is certainly happier now that he's blade-free, he is still pretty upset about the fact that it was left in his body for so long.

Thinking back on it now, McNeely recalled setting off metal detectors without knowing why. "They should've X-rayed right off the beginning in case there was internal damage," McNeely told CBC.

He has reportedly contacted a lawyer, and is considering filing a lawsuit against the local health system.

[screengrab via CBC]