Australian couple sickened by rare parasitic worms

July 5, 2011AUSTRALIA – A VICTORIAN couple endured a health nightmare after tiny worms with teeth began eating through their bodies. It is the first time humans have been infected by the parasite in Australia. It is believed the couple became ill after eating a fish they caught on a WA camping holiday. Alfred hospital infectious disease physician Andrew Fuller said that when the couple ate the fish, believed to be a black bream, they also ingested the gnathostomiasis larvae. “The worms are 1-3mm long and have got these sharp little teeth and they can go anywhere they like in the body,” Dr Fuller said. The worm works its way around the human body until it dies or is killed by the immune system. “They move under the skin and cause itchy lumps that can make you feel sick – and it can be very hard to diagnose.” The infected couple suffered muscle pain, fevers, vomiting and their skin began to look like orange peel. They were given antibiotics and have recovered. The worms can stay in a human for 15 years, leaving people chronically ill. They can make their way into the brain, other organs and the spinal cord. “They eat your tissues,” Dr Fuller said. He had treated 28 people with the condition, who all contracted it overseas. Neither of the latest patients had been overseas. Dr Fuller sent samples of their blood to Bangkok. The fish was caught in the Calder River, north of Derby, and the incident was reported in The Australian Medical Journal. –Herald Sun
contribution by Gen
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3 Responses to Australian couple sickened by rare parasitic worms

  1. pam says:

    Oh, wow – I read WA and my mind immediately went to Washington, vs Western Australia. Just a bit to USAcentric, I’m afraid. That said, almost all fish (I’m even ambivalent about our salmon run) and seafood are off my diet since the Gulf Coast and Japanese disasters – unfortunately, with global markets, it’s hard to accurately source where seafood is coming from – (and I’m pretty much into locally grown beef, too, which means my veges are looking better every day )


  2. josh says:

    Hey Alvin you were right about all of the new bugs popping up all over the world,it will probably get worst with all the disasters happening.Keep up the good work on this site!


  3. concerned mommy says:

    to Pam: article in my local newspaper about how in China, Tilapia & oysters are grown in “aquaculture” tanks, with chickens roosting above. The chicken droppings are entering the water and the fish & oysters eat it. literally, full of poop, those oysters are. Now, try getting a can of smoked oysters that aren’t a “product of China”.

    Also, my sister told me (not sure of source) that chickens are raised in China, then dehydrated and shipped to the USA. There they are re-hydrated, re-flavored, re-colored, and processed into many of our conveinience foods. Did you ever notice how juicy and moist the chicken is on frozen pizzas, bistro express, chicken pot pies, etc? Its all artificial! Who knows what horrors lurk in this meat.

    I have been buying Australian beef, found it on sale & bought 18 steaks one day, put 9 of them thru an old fashioned meat grinder to make burger. (It was a horrendous task) I learned from a friend that Austrailians treat their cows humanely.

    Lately, my approach has been if I dont know how it grew, I wont eat it. Being Canadian, that left me 3 vegetables in April & May. . . Beets, Parsnips and Hothouse cukes/tomatos/peppers. Recently I emailed BC Hothouse to inquire (since they state on their website that they test the water quality & crop quality) if they test for radiation and if their products are GMO. 2 weeks now and no answer. I will be forwarding my original email to the president of BCHH who is listed on their website, to inquire just how long it should take to get a reply to my serious inquiry. (And they’re off the list, for now)

    God Bless!


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