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Worm identification

Brett Pickering bpicker at sevilleta.unm.edu
Tue Nov 26 21:02:29 EST 1996

Brent Dixon wrote:
> I had a call yesterday from a man who claims to have passed two large,
> active worms in his urine stream.  He described them as 10cm long and
> 2-3mm in diameter, red, with small hooks.  
> he has eaten recently was some undercooked ground beef. 

Can you describe the hooks further (size in proportion to the rest of
the worm and location).  If they were simply a bifurcation or
trifurcation of the posterior end of the worm, then they are horsehair
worms.  They are from the Phylum Nematomorpha, and there have been cases
of them passing in urine (although it is very rare and some cases maybe
spurious).  If you get more specimens I would be happy to identify them
for you.

Brett Pickering
University of New Mexico

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