What are the parasitic worms that can infect the human body and how to avoid them?

Worm removed from a woman’s brain in Canberra, Australia. (Photo: Canberra Health Services/AP)

following the case of a woman in Australia who was found with a Worm alive inside his brain, Various experts around the world have warned about this after experiencing night sweats, depression and even amnesia. Other unusual cases of parasites Those that have appeared unexpectedly and measures to prevent them.

The latest case is published in the journal emerging infectious diseasesPhysicians describe the removal of a live 8-cm-long nematode (roundworm) from the brain of a 64-year-old woman who was immunocompromised.

This worm was identified as O.RobertCoriginally from australia, where it lives on carpet pythons. The woman may have come in contact with the eggs of the worm through snake faeces while searching for warrigal leaves to eat.

It is important to note that this is a very rare event And headlines about brain worms can be alarming. But There are other common parasites that can infect the body and brain. And there are ways to reduce your risk of becoming infected with one or more.

The head of a larva, photographed under a microscope (NHI)

An investigation in China reported a similar case in 2016 in an eight-month-old girl with an underdeveloped immune system who also suffered from irritability.

At first, worms were found in his feces, but further investigation revealed that these organisms were larvae. Lasioderma SerikornWhich is commonly known as cigar beetle.

Doctors claimed that the beetle eggs might have been swallowed when the girl came in contact with the soil or she had eaten oranges recently. This report indicates that l. Serikorn It can accidentally infect humans and cause canthariasis which can cause serious harm to infants and elderly patients by affecting vital organs of the body,” wrote the medical team.

Eye worm infestations occur in different parts of the world (AP)

It was discovered in 2018 abby beckleya woman in Oregon had type of eye worm Which was earlier seen only in cattle. And experts say that the larvae of these insects are picked up and spread by flies that feed on cow’s tears.

26-year-old Oregon woman after horseback riding on Gold Beach, a cattle ranchThere was a burning sensation in the eyes for a week. The cause was discovered when a small worm was removed from his left eye. but later A total of 14 worms were removed.

tiny insects, each less than a centimeter long, belonged to a species called thelazia gulosaas told by the doctor richard bradbury, lead author of the study that reported the case. The experts, who work with the Malaria and Parasitic Diseases Division of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said at the time that the infection was rare.

“by transition insects thelazia They mainly occur in animals and humans are only accidental hosts. It’s incredibly interesting and I’m sure it might make some people apprehensive, but it’s not something that people need to worry about.”

A worm was removed from the eye of a 26-year-old woman. (Photo: CDC/Reuters Handout)

24 year old young Graham McCumber was hospitalized in Hawaii with stiff joints, Fatigue and nausea after eating kale from her garden. It turned out that the reason rat lungworm, A common parasite in Southeast Asia and tropical Pacific islands. The adult worm lives only in rodents, but its larvae can infect animals such as slugs, snails, and freshwater shrimp. These larvae can cause a disease in people called angiostrongyliasis, which affects the brain and spinal cord.

The disease can be prevented by thoroughly washing and cooking vegetables, snails, crabs or shrimp, checking vegetables for snails and slugs, and avoiding eating raw vegetables where the parasite is prevalent, say experts at the Cleveland Clinic. Is.

worm infestation, also known as myiasis, It is uncommon in the United Kingdom and the United States, but has been found in people who have traveled to tropical and subtropical regions. In one case, doctors removed three live flies, each about two centimeters in size, from the eye, arm and neck of a 32-year-old woman visiting the Amazon jungle.

Picture of the most common parasitic pinworm (Medline Plus)

The most common parasitic infection is through pinworms (entobius vermicularis), which is thought to be present in more than a billion people worldwide, especially children.

Pinworms grow to about 1 cm in length and are specific to human hosts. They cause intense itching in the tail and can be contagious if touched.

Giardia ( giardia duodenalis ) is also a very common parasite and can contaminate food, water and surfaces. This waterborne parasite is associated with poor hygiene and causes abdominal symptoms such as diarrhea, cramps, bloating, nausea, and fatigue.

Giardia cysts (small sacs of immature parasites) spread disease and are excreted in the feces, where they can remain viable in the environment for months before being ingested by another person. They can also be ingested through raw or undercooked food (such as lamb).

Was a cestode or a parasite. (Getty Images/Collection Mix)

tapeworms are parasites It can be a real headache, as a 50-year-old man in the UK found out when Doctors found one in his brain. The patient had been experiencing headaches, seizures, flashbacks and strange odors for four years before the doctors The worm was removed in 2012 This showed that it had entered from one side of his brain to the other.

When they affect the brain, it is called neurocysticercosis. It is the leading cause of epilepsy worldwide. Worm was discovered when an MRI scan revealed an abnormal cluster of rings moving around in his brain. Scientists later reported that it was a type of tapeworm known as tapeworm. Spirometra erinaceieuropei, Which is commonly found in amphibians and crustaceans in China.

Doctors behind this discovery sayThe person probably contracted the parasite during a trip to China, Possibly through contaminated meat or water. Dr Hayley Bennett, who worked on the case, said at the time: “Man is a rare and accidental host for this particular worm.”

Larvae that can cause a life-threatening infection if they reach the brain have been seen in a US patient (Photo: EuropixN)

Tapeworm larvae can infect muscles and soft tissues. Brain tissue can provide a home for the larvae because it is soft and easily accessible through blood vessels. A brain infection can cause headaches, dizziness, seizures, cognitive impairment and even dementia due to increased cerebrospinal fluid pressure.

Even more strange was the discovery by experts in 2015 that when tapeworms contract what appears to be cancer, tumors can develop in their human hosts. Biopsy of lung tumor and lymph nodes taken from a 41-year-old man with HIV, They detected cancer-like cells, but found they were not human. Instead, they were a common type of tapeworm called Hymenolepis nana. Dr Peter Olsson of the Natural History Museum in London, who worked on the case, said such conditions were very rare and only occurred in highly immunosuppressed patients.

Naegleria fowleri It is an amoeba found in lakes, rivers and springs in warm climates including Australia. In people who swim in infected water, the parasite can enter their body through their nose. It then travels to the brain and destroys brain tissue. The condition is almost always fatal.

An armyworm, which usually emerges at night, is seen in a sugarcane crop at dusk in a village in Menghai, Yunnan, China. (Reuters/Eli Song)

1. Avoid raw or undercooked pork. The risk may be reduced by freezing the meat first (although home freezers may not be cold enough) and allowing it to be cooked to a higher internal temperature. Avoid pork if you travel to places with unhygienic conditions.

2. Avoid jumping in or submerging in warm, fresh bodies of waterespecially if they are known to be involved Naegleria fowleri,

3. Practice Good hand hygiene To reduce the risk of rare and common infections. This means washing your hands thoroughly frequently, using soap, scrubbing for at least 20 seconds, rinsing and drying thoroughly. Cut and clean under the nails regularly.

4. Wear Outdoor Shoes To avoid soil-borne parasites, wash shoes and leave them outside, especially in rural and remote areas.

keep reading:

A neurosurgeon investigating a patient’s mysterious symptoms removed a worm from his brain
The Incredible Case Of The Woman Who Had 14 Worms Removed From One Eye
They Caught an Alligator the Size of a Movie Monster
A sperm donor from the United States and the journey to find his 96 biological children

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