California man finds 5-foot tapeworm in body, likely from sushi

Glen Mclaughlin
January 20, 2018

A Fresno, California, man with a daily habit of eating sushi pulled a 5-foot tapeworm from his intestines and brought it to the emergency room where he asked to be treated for tapeworms.

In the January 8 episode of medical podcast "This Won't Hurt A Bit," Dr. Kenny Banh recalled how the man asked to be tested for worms and what he did next.

Banh said a young man walked into the hospital complaining of bloody diarrhea and asking to to be tested for worms.

The man confessed he ate raw salmon sashimi on a daily basis, which may have been how he contracted the tapeworm. Banh recounted what the man told him on the podcast "This Won't Hurt A Bit" earlier this month.

The tapeworm didn't have that effect on the Fresno patient, who was a little chubby, Banh said. On unwrapping the paper, the doctor measured the worm and was stunned by its length - 5-and-a-half feet, Bahn revealed.

The man had discovered the worm as it began wiggling out while he sat on the toilet.

The tapeworm is believed to be from the man's love of salmon sushi. "He then picks the thing up, looks at it, and what does it do?"

The patient is now wondering if he has been eating salmon from somewhere that it hasn't been properly treated.

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The man told Banh about his final trip to the bathroom before deciding it was time to head to the hospital.

I take out a toilet paper roll, and wrapped around it of course is what looks like this giant, long tapeworm.

Like sushi? You might not after reading this story.

The patient was given medication to help remove the rest of the worm from his body.

And researchers say that this means salmon caught anywhere along the Pacific coast of the United States may have tapeworm. And the CDC warned, "The risk of becoming infected with the Japanese tapeworm parasite is most prevalent when consuming raw or undercooked fish, particularly in dishes such as sushi, sashimi and ceviche".

Many cases of diphyllobothriasis are asymptomatic; however, because of it's large size (can grow up to 30 feet long), a patient may experience abdominal discomfort, diarrhea, vomiting, and weight loss.

In February 2017, the CDC announced that they'd found a species called Diphyllobothrium nihonkaiense -the Japanese broad tapeworm- inside samples of wild pink salmon from Alaska.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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