Parasites in sushis: gastrointestinal infection caused by mini roundworms

Parasites in sushis: gastrointestinal infection caused by mini roundworms

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Anisakiasis from roundworms: Sometimes dangerous parasites can be found in sushi
In recent decades, Japanese food has become more and more popular in Europe. Few cities in Germany can do without a sushi restaurant today. The fish dishes are considered very healthy, but sometimes there are also dangerous parasites that can sometimes lead to severe stomach pain.

Sushi with side effects
The high life expectancy of the Japanese is associated, among other things, with their healthy diet. Sushi and co therefore ensure a long life. However, in the past it has been shown that raw fish can also pose a health hazard. Chinese doctors reported years ago about a patient who had thousands of tapeworms in his body after eating sushi. A case has also been reported in Portugal in which the consumption of the popular Japanese food has a negative impact on health.

Stomach ache from roundworms
Medic around Dr. Joana Carmo from Hospital Egas Moniz in Lisbon, Portugal, reported in the British Medical Journal Case Reports about a patient who had severe stomach pain, nausea and vomiting, and fever for a week after eating sushi.

The 32-year-old's symptoms and a blood test that showed increased levels of inflammation indicated anisakiasis, an infectious disease caused by roundworms.

The tiny parasites can sometimes be found in raw fish such as sushi or matjes. "Anisakis can infect salmon, herring, cod, mackerel, octopus, halibut, and red snapper," Carmo said, according to a CNN report.

She said: “Fish infestation in European countries is probably more common than we thought. One study showed that Anisakis simplex (the most common type associated with human infections) was found in 39.4 percent of the fresh mackerel that was examined by various fish markets in Granada, Spain. ”

And another study in Spain found that nearly 56 percent of the blue whiting sold in five supermarket chains was infected.

Heat or freeze fish
To prevent infection, the fish must be heated to over 60 degrees or cooled to below -20 degrees. The pathogen does not survive these temperatures.

In the patient in Lisbon, the larvae of anisakis nematodes were identified using an endoscopic examination. The doctors removed the parasites using a special network.

After that, "the patient's symptoms resolved immediately," the clinic team reported, according to a report by the "BBC". (ad)

Author and source information

Video: Microbiology of Parasites (July 2022).


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