A 38-year-old man in Shiyan, China had been suffering issues with pain in his stomach, nausea, and an iron deficiency, and when he couldn’t take it anymore, he had visited a hospital to see what was going on following two years of doctor visits regarding the issue.
Doctors decided to take a stool sample to figure out what the cause may have been, and in the stool sample, the discovery of a tapeworm egg was of utmost importance. After questioning, the man noted a very important detail: he loved raw beef, and ate it regularly.
Doctors from the hospital then prescribed the man with the drug praziquantel, which is used to treat tapeworm infections, and was forced to drink a laxative to help blast the tapeworm out of him.
When it finally came out, it was found to be 6.2 meters long – that’s nearly 20 feet. Many tapeworms are around the 5-meter range, but they can grow to be up to 25 meters long in some cases where they are not treated.
When the worm was removed from the man’s body, the man reportedly gained his appetite back three months later and no longer experienced the pains and other complications he was experiencing before the hospital visit.
Tapeworms, which are flat-like in appearance, can live in the human’s digestive system for years, feeding and growing. They are a parasite that can go undetected for long periods of time, but cause many other issues down the line.
One of the ways a tapeworm can be contracted is with the consumption of raw beef, but they are also passed on by unsanitary transmission of fecal matter to the digestive system.
Fully-cooking your food, and keeping your hands washed are a great way to prevent tapeworm infections for yourself.
Source: The New England Journal of Medicine via DailyMail