Appendicitis is a common enough condition that no one anymore bats and eyelash at the mention of it.
That was why when a teenage girl started to experience its typical symptoms (abdominal pain, nausea), she went to the hospital to have it taken care of.
According to an article published on BMJ Case Reports, however, the doctors weren’t entirely convinced that it was appendicitis causing her discomfort.
The case report said:
“Non-specific abdominal pain could also be due to irritable bowel syndrome; however, there was no bloating, change in bowel habit or obvious psychological stressors at home.
“Urinary tract infections can cause similar symptoms, but there was no frequency or dysuria and the urinary investigations ruled out this differential.
“The patient reported no gynaecological symptoms and she was not in the right stage of her cycle for mittelschmerz (mid-cycle pain) to be a likely cause.
“Other differentials for abdominal pain, including inflammatory bowel syndrome, Meckel’s diverticulum and ovarian cysts, were not supported by the history, examination and investigation findings.”
Since her pain wasn’t going away and they did not want to risk a life-threatening bout with appendicitis, the doctors decided to take out her appendix anyway.
Watch the cringe-worthy video of the surgery on the next page
As they were about the take it out, they noticed that its color was “lily white.” Normally an appendix is pink- or red-hued.
Then another surprise greeted the doctors: a “multitude of worms” emerged from her appendix.
“They swiftly removed the appendix and sucked up any stray worms with a suction pipe, preventing them from falling into her abdominal cavity,” a Daily Mail report said.
Doctors revealed that the teen was suffering from an intestinal infection called pinworm, caused by tiny parasitic worms. Also called threadworms, they are the most common parasitic worms in the US and UK.
Although they are not harmful, they are highly contagious, entering the body when people accidentally ingest microscopic pinworm eggs found on contaminated hands and surfaces, underwear, toilets, kitchen counters and food.
The eggs then travel into the digestive tract and hatch in the small intestine.
“From the small intestine, pinworm larvae continue their journey to the large intestine, where they live as parasites, with their heads attached to the inside wall of the bowel,” the Daily Mail report said.
As for the teenage girl, she made full recovery and her abdominal pain, as well as other symptoms, disappeared.
READ: Mom’s frequent headaches due to worms in her brain from eating contaminated meat
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