These scans show a builder whose brain and chest were riddled with more than 700 tapeworm cysts causing him regular seizures and loss of consciousness after eating poorly cooked pork.
Zhu Zhongfa, 43, who is a construction worker by trade, is believed to have ingested eggs of the parasite Taenia solium – better known as the pork tapeworm.
The man treated in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang Province in East China, is likely to have contracted the tissue infections known as cysticercosis and neurocysticercosis – the latter affecting the brain – after having a meal with half-cooked pork.
He sought medical attention after suffering from regular seizures, foamed at the mouth, and also fainted seemingly at random over the past few weeks.
Doctor Huang Jianrong, with the Affiliated Hospital of Zhejiang University School of Medicine, ordered brain MRIs which revealed that Mr Zhu’s brain and chest were riddled with cysts of the pork tapeworm.
The larvae entered Mr Zhu’s body via his digestive system and made their way to his head via his bloodstream, feeding on his brain, reports said.
Doctor Huang said: “He not only had numerous space-occupying lesion in his brain, he also had cysts in his lungs and chest muscles.
“Different patients respond differently to the infection depending on where the parasites occupy.
“In this case, he had seizures and lost consciousness, but others with cysts in their lungs might cough a lot.
“We killed the larvae using antiparasitic drugs and prescribed medication to protect his organs and reduce any side effects brought on by the treatment.
“Phase one of the treatment has now concluded after a successful week.
“Now we’ll run further tests.”
It is still unclear whether Mr Zhu will suffer any long-term effects from the tapeworm infection.
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