Worm found in US man’s brain after eating undercooked bacon

A 52-year-old US man thought to be suffering from severe migraines was actually battling a bizarre tapeworm infestation in his brain — caused by eating undercooked bacon.

The unnamed patient, whose tale of medical woe recently wriggled its way into the American Journal of Case Reports, had been complaining of week-long, aggressive headaches over a four-month period after consuming the pesky pork product, the New York Postreports.

Experts said the individual’s “lifelong preference for soft bacon” wasn’t the sole cause of the specific, bizarre ailment — but rather that the breakfast favourite had gone bad, with undercooking leaving the man exceptionally vulnerable.

The perfect storm situation led to a case of neurocysticercosis — the scientific term for a parasite laying eggs that infect numerous regions of the body.

Even more disgusting — neurocysticercosis can be contagious.

“It is historically very unusual to encounter infected pork in the United States, and our case

may have public health implications,” researchers wrote.

According to the CDC, if afflicted individuals do not thoroughly wash their hands after a bowel movement, they can spread eggs to other members of their household — especially through food.

The CDC says the unusual ailment is “preventable” but still leads to hospitalisation for about 1,000 unlucky Americans annually.

In this case, along with swelling, the patient developed cysts on both sides of his brain. This was later determined to be the tapeworm having laid eggs within the man’s brain.

He was treated with the deworming drug albendazole, which led to improvements after two weeks.

Because four in five cases involve a seizure, clinicians are being warned to “retain a high index of suspicion and obtain thorough histories in patients with changes in migraine pattern.”

This article originally appeared in the New York Post and has been reproduced with permission.

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