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

Mackenzie Bean - Print  | 

A California man in August sought care at Fresno, Calif.-based Community Regional Medical Center's emergency department after pulling a more than 5-foot tapeworm out of himself, according to ABC7 News.

The man, who had been experiencing bloody diarrhea, pulled the tapeworm from his rectum, wrapped it around an empty toilet paper roll and brought it to the ED.

"He asked me for worm treatment, and I was like, oh, not an everyday request," said Kenny Banh, MD, an emergency medicine physician at UCSF Fresno who treated the man, according to ABC7 News.

Dr. Banh said the tapeworm had likely been growing in the man's stomach for at least six months. The man may have gotten the tapeworm from eating sushi, which contained raw salmon, on a daily basis. Last February, the CDC warned consumers about the risk of tapeworms in salmon caught in Alaska.

Dr. Banh shared his experience treating the man on a recent episode of the podcast "This Won't Hurt A Bit." To listen to the episode, click here.

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