Itchy lump on woman's face is actually parasitic worm crawling under skin

A Lump Moving Across a Woman's Face Was a Parasitic Worm Crawling Under Her Skin

A case study featuring a lot of disturbing images about the woman and the worm in her face was published in the New England Journal of Medicine in a report titled "MigratingDirofilaria repens".

When a woman in Russian Federation noticed a small lump under her left eye, she snapped a selfie to document the unusual bulge. She clicked a selfie to record such unusual swelling, but something even stranger happened-the lump moved. Five days later, it had re-appeared on her upper left eyelid.

The lady made a decision to document the movement of the nodule and this she did by taking photographs of her face.

The doctor who consulted the Russian Federation woman declared that the parasite "accidentally" infested her.

Turns out, the moving bump was a parasite known as a Dirofilaria repens, a type of long, thin parasitic roundworm that enters its hosts through mosquito bites, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As horrifying as this sounds, the treatment is relatively simple: Surgically removing the worm can cure the infection, according to the new report. Subsequent genetic tests identified the worm as a Dirofilaria repens.

The disturbing discovery is made worse by the fact that the woman monitored the lump as it moved to different spots on her face. Dogs, foxes and wolves are more common hosts.

Hence, these parasites cannot reach a point of maturity inside the human body nor can it reproduce. So a human infection by one of these worms is always an accident.

In some cases, the worm's active movement near eyelids can be noticed.

However, transmission to humans is rare.

The case report's lead author, Vladimir Kartashev, a professor in the Department of Infectious Diseases at Rostov State Medical University in Rostov-na-Donu, Russia, said in an email Thursday that such parasites are an "emerging disease" in the western part of the former Soviet Union and in certain parts of Europe. The study called the number of human cases in Europe and Asia "a serious public health concern".

But tourists who plan to travel to Russian Federation to watch the FIFA world cup this year are advised to always keep insect repellant at hand and cover themselves up if they plan on visiting the rural areas.

In humans the worms cause a lump under the skin that occasionally move around.

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