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An Alberta Man Got Parasitic Worms From Making Sushi At Home

They were eating his insides.
Not the sushi dinner he was expecting. Screenshot via Skinwalker.

An Alberta man who got fancy by making sushi at home was later diagnosed with the first known Canadian case of a parasitic worm.

The 50-year-old showed up at Calgary's South Health Campus hospital in August of 2014, vomiting violently and suffering from crippling stomach pain, according to the National Post. Earlier in the evening, he'd made himself a sushi dinner using raw salmon purchased from a local Superstore.


The patient's CT scan and X-ray indicated something weird was happening in his stomach but doctors couldn't figure out exactly WTF was wrong, so they stuck a camera down his throat.

That's when shit got next-level gross.

The footage revealed centimetre-long worms were feeding on dude's stomach lining. After testing some of the "larva" in the man's body (ewwwww), a microbiologist confirmed the worms were anisakis, a parasite that infects marine mammals, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Humans can become "hosts" by eating infected raw or undercooked seafood.

The case study was recently published in the Canadian Journal of Infectious Diseases and Medical Microbiology.

The CDC said the worms need to be removed from the patient's body via surgery or an endoscopy. Speaking to the National Post, Stephen Vaughan, an infectious diseases expert, explained that, untreated, they could poke a hole in a person's stomach.

Vaughan said raw farm-fed salmon and saltwater fish are generally OK for consumption, while the CDC website's advice for avoiding anisakis is simply: "do not eat raw or undercooked fish or squid."

But sushi restaurants follow strict freezing regulations to ensure their fish is safe to eat.

As much as we all love a good home-cooked meal, it's probably best to leave it to the pros in this case.

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