Cough is a fairly common condition that we normally ignore or treat with a short course of antibiotics. Persistent cough for months can indicate a serious condition like Tuberculosis.
However, when an x-ray revealed the root cause of this man's persistent cough, it was something even more terrifying.
The x-ray revealed that the condition was actually due to the presence of parasites - the tapeworms. A doctor posted the scans on Twitter that showed the calcified remains of the worms.
The condition is known as Cysticercosis. It occurs when the larvae of the tapeworm enter the body. They usually enter the body through contaminated food, mostly meat. They live in the intestines.
The larvae form hard cysts. The worms die, but the cysts remain in the body and can cause various issues.
Cysticercosis is a parasitic infection caused by the larval stage of the pork tapeworm, Taenia solium. It primarily affects humans and occurs when the eggs of the tapeworm are ingested, usually through the consumption of contaminated food or water.
Once ingested, the tapeworm eggs hatch in the intestines and the larvae migrate to various tissues and organs in the body, including the muscles, brain, eyes, and spinal cord. These larvae develop into fluid-filled cysts called cysticerci, which can cause a range of symptoms and complications depending on their location.
Symptoms of cysticercosis can vary widely and may not be present in all cases. When symptoms do occur, they can include muscle pain, lumps under the skin, seizures, headaches, vision problems, confusion, and neurological symptoms.
The treatment of cysticercosis typically involves a combination of medications and supportive care. Antiparasitic drugs, such as albendazole or praziquantel, are used to kill the parasites and reduce inflammation. Depending on the location and severity of the infection, additional treatments may be necessary, such as surgery to remove cysts or control complications.
Prevention of cysticercosis involves practicing good hygiene, including proper handwashing and thorough cooking of pork products. Additionally, avoiding the consumption of raw or undercooked pork and contaminated water sources can significantly reduce the risk of infection.
(Input from various media sources)