It's these kinds of stories that make me want to plan my next vacation ... at home. A 27-year-old woman from the U.K. went on the trip of a lifetime with her boyfriend to Peru, but on the plane trip home, she began experiencing headaches. Soon, she had shooting pains in her face and was hearing a "scratching" sound inside of her head. At first, doctors thought she had an ear infection. However, she was referred to a specialist to make certain. That's when they discovered the stuff that nightmares are made of. The woman, Rochelle Harris, didn't have just any old ear problem. She had ... maggots in her ear! And they'd set up shop deep within her ear canal. Shudder shudder shuuuuudder.
Rochelle had remembered walking through a swarm of flies while in Peru, but when one landed on her ear, she simply waved it off and thought no more about it.
Until the headaches. And the shooting pains.
And the scratching noises. Yiiiiiiikes.
Luckily, the specialist was able to locate the maggots and eventually determine that the eight of them, big old suckers, had hatched inside of her ear drum, and drilled a hole into her ear canal.
If the critters reached her brain, they could cause meningitis, or internal bleeding, or even facial paralysis. Oh my god, my head is a little scratchy right now. Dandruff? MAGGOTS?!
Docs tried flushing the creatures out with olive oil and then left Rochelle with her new pals for the evening. She said:
It was longest few hours of my life. I just wanted them out of me and now I knew what was causing the sensations and sounds, it made it all the worse.
The next day, Rochelle was sedated and the maggots removed. It was also determined that, thankfully, they had not yet reached her brain. WHEW.
This isn't the first time I've heard about this type of thing. One woman I read about had worms that had burrowed into her brain -- but doctors kept thinking her complaints of feeling itching inside her skull was a psychological problem. Finally, one doc believed her yammering that something was in her brain and discovered the worms just under her skull.
Just goes to show, if there is something off with your brain, don't let so-called experts tell you there's nothing wrong. Keep going until you find a doctor who will examine you thoroughly.
This is so skeevy I don't know if I'm ever leaving the house again.
Have you ever had anything burrow under your skin?
Image via Discovery Channel