A 15-year-old schoolgirl with severe stomach pain was mistaken to be suffering from appendicitis and had been admitted to the emergency room of the Royal Cornwall Hospital in the UK.
Doctors were not able to detect the exact cause of her stabbing pain on the right side of the abdomen. But they decided to remove her appendixes.
‘Hundreds of tiny pinworms were discovered inside a 15-year-old schoolgirl after she was rushed into the operating theater with suspected appendicitis.’
To their dismay, when the medical team cut opened her stomach, they were shocked to see hundreds of tiny worms inside her abdomen. They removed them quickly.
On testing, they found that the worms were E. vermicularis (human pinworm) variety, which are highly contagious, though not harmful.
Dr. Luke Allen, a member of the medical team, said, "Worm infections are very common in children and about 10% will suffer some kind of pain in their guts. But it is very unusual to mistake it for appendicitis."
The girl was treated with medication to ensure any remaining worms and eggs were killed. She has now made a full recovery. The case study was published in the journal BMJ
Dr Allen added: "Almost all cases of worms result from poor hand hygiene, underlining the importance of washing your hands after going to the toilet. Outbreaks are very common among toddlers, and in nurseries."