A mother only identified as JC suffered for months before doctors found the answer to what was going on with her, and it all linked back to gas station food.

The 34-year-old underwent months of various treatments, during which she ended up hospitalized twice with seizures. It all linked back to one decision she made months before the answer was discovered.

The whole story was told by ChubbyEmu, a YouTuber and doctor/adjunct professor for the University of Illinois.

JC arrived home late from work one night, and realized she hadn't eaten all day. Starving, with no restaurants open, she opened the fridge to find some leftover sushi she'd picked up at a gas station a few days before.

“The fish did taste a little sour but she just put soy sauce on it to mask it out … the five-day-old sushi was so uneventful she didn’t even remember eating it,” ChubbyEmu said.

Four months later, her body started to shut down.

It began with insomnia, which led to her being sleepless, leaving her anxious and confused. She would lay in bed, feeling like her heart was “beating out of her neck”.

Not long after the insomnia began, JC started having stomach cramps, feeling her stomach jiggle and shake before she went to the toilet.

She told her husband it felt like "a fish was flapping around in her belly”. JC turned to essential oils, melatonin, and special tea to help her sleep, but nothing work.

JC then began to hallucinate, seeing bugs crawling on the walls. As they worsened, she started to see the bugs under her skin.

One night, she lost complete feeling in her hands and feet. When she got out of bed, she felt urine dripping down her leg. She was rushed to an urgent care, where doctors couldn't find any obvious answers.

JC was prescribed cognitive behavioral therapy, to help with what doctors thought was stress and anxiety.

The therapy didn't help, because the issue was not mental. JC's husband later found her "mumbling to herself in the corner, shaking and her pants were wet." When he checked on her, she fell unconscious to a seizure, so he called an ambulance.

Blood work revealed her red blood cells were abnormally large but immature. Her white blood cells were malformed and she was anaemic.

Doctor's found JC to have sensory ataxia, a disorder causing people to lose sensory awareness, and suffering neurodegeneration.

“When cells aren’t maturing properly, it could be because of nutritional deficiency,” ChubbyEmu said.

When asked, her husband confirmed that she had barely eaten one meal a day. Because of this, her B12 vitamin levels were extremely low. This caused her to have severe nerve damage, causing her to lose sleep, have delusions, psychosis and hallucinations.
Doctors prescribed B12 vitamins daily and discharged her from the hospital. The vitamins helped for about 2 months, until they symptoms came back.
When she returned to the hospital, doctors wanted to know why her body no longer was absorbing B12. They assumed something had to be living in her gastrointestinal tract, so the doctors ordered a stool sample.
They found JC's stool to contain thousands of eggs measuring 40x60 micrometers long, and a broken piece of a tapeworm.
The doctors asked JC if she'd recently eaten any grains, as they can sometimes be contaminated by rodents and insects, but she barely was able to eat any carbs.
She thought back to when this began, and remembered the funky tasting gas station sushi she had eaten 9 months ago.
The tapeworm was able to be identified as diphyllobothrium latum, which can grow to lengths as long as nearly 30 feet.
They realized the B12 shot had worked, because it went directly to her bloodstream and not to her stomach where it could be stolen.

“As the B12 stores in her liver started to become depleted, and they were probably already low because of how she ate before the five-day old sushi, her nerves started wasting away,” ChubbyEmu said.

JC was given a single dose of praziquantel, an anti-worm medication and made a full recovery.

Read more at News AU
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