A Japanese woman got more than she bargained for after visiting the doctor with an irritated throat.
The cause? A live worm living inside her tonsil.
The 25-year-old woman visited Tokyo’s St Luke’s International Hospital with complaints of throat pain according to a case study published in The American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.
It came five days after she ate assorted sashimi.
The doctor found a black worm, which was 38 millimetres long and still moving, inside the woman’s left tonsil.
It was removed using tweezers.
DNA testing on the worm identified it as a fourth-stage larva of Pseudoterranova azaras, a parasitic roundworm, the study revealed.
The parasite infects the stomach after a host has consumed larvae in raw or undercooked marine fish, the study said, with more than 700 cases reported in Japan, north Pacific countries, South America and the Netherlands.
The woman’s blood test results were normal, and her symptoms rapidly improved after the worm was removed, the journal noted.