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Saturday, November 22nd 2008

It Could Be A Tumor…

…It’s Not A Tumor

The Barrow is certainly an expert at promoting itself in the media. And rightfully so based on some of the cases they managed. There is a new case report from BNI which is making its way through the international media. This one is making the news, not for the technical difficulty of what was achieved, but because of the peculiarity of what was found during the case.

A woman in Arizona was thought to have a tumor in her brainstem, but when the neurosurgeon went in he found a tapeworm. Taenia solium is a bad little critter whose larvae infect the human nervous system as an intermediate host. You get it from either undercooked pork (as pigs are its primary host) or from ingesting human fecal material from someone infected with the worm.

The BBC has a video, including a blip from the operation itself when they discovered the worm.

The blog Neurophilosophy has a more detailed and well written discussion of t. solium infection.