Appendicitis surgery shows that 15-year-olds had hundreds of pinworms in the intestine
In an operation in the UK, doctors found that there were hundreds of worms in the 15-year-old patient's gut. The young woman had been operated on because the doctors assumed that appendicitis was responsible for her abdominal pain.
Diagnosis is complex
With appendicitis (appendicitis) there are often non-specific symptoms. Since the diagnosis is usually complex and ultrasound, physical examination and blood count only give rise to suspicion, when in doubt, doctors prefer to opt for surgery if there is evidence of inflammation. So also in the case of a young English woman. When the doctors operated on the 15-year-old, however, they found that her complaints had another cause. There was a huge amount of pinworms in the young woman's gut.
Doctors opted for appendix surgery
According to a report in the “Daily Mail”, the 15-year-old had sought medical treatment for severe abdominal pain. Her right lower abdomen was tense and sensitive to pressure.
The doctors at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro, Cornwall, immediately suspected appendicitis due to the symptoms, but "blood tests, a urine sample and an ultrasound result did not indicate inflammation," the report says.
Since appendicitis could not be ruled out completely and can be fatal if left untreated, the doctors decided to have an operation.
Appendix was "snow white"
The team headed by Dr. Luke Nelson Allen about the intervention they filmed with a camera.
When they opened the patient's abdomen, they found no ovarian, uterus, and small intestine disease. However, they noticed that the appendix was "snow white" instead of red or pink.
"When they prepared the appendix for removal, they were shocked when a" lot of worms "came out," the newspaper writes.
Pinworms removed with a sucker
According to the doctors, innumerable white, thin pinworms wriggled out of the intestine. To prevent the parasites from moving further into the abdomen, they were removed with a suction device.
After the procedure, both the patient and her relatives were given medication that should not only kill worms, but also their eggs.
According to the information, the adolescent recovered quickly after the operation and her pain disappeared.
Little worm diseases in Europe
Although worm diseases are relatively rare in Europe, pinworms are often found, especially in children. The approximately three to twelve millimeter long parasites sit on the lining of the intestine.
Signs can include after itching and anus pain. In some cases, the small white worms are also visible in the faeces.
The infection usually takes place via traces of infected faeces that get into the mouth. These can be found on toys, for example, or on foods such as salad. Children, in particular, get infected more often because they scratch their buttocks and the worm eggs can then get into their mouths with their fingers.
In some cases, home remedies for worms can help, but patients often need medication.
However, with other parasites, such as a pork tapeworm, doctors need to do something else. For example, a 48-year-old Indian was recently reported to have pulled a two-meter worm out of his mouth. The tapeworm had nested in the patient's intestine. (ad)