Dangerous parasite showing up in sushi and raw fish

A condition called Anisakiasis prono on the rise - an illness caused by eating fish or seafood contaminated by parasites.

The CDC recommends that people not eat raw or undercooked fish or squid to prevent the disease.

A study by BMJ Case Reports cites a 32-year-old man who developed severe symptoms that immediately disappeared once the parasite in his stomach was surgically removed. This inner vision revealed a swollen intestinal membrane with a firmly attached parasite, its end penetrating the stomach.

The British Medical Journal published a report that said a man was admitted to a hospital after he recently ate sushi. The examination report confirmed that the patient had anisakiasis, which is also referred as herring worm disease, commonly caused by the in-take of undercooked fish. New estimates suggest there are several thousand cases now in Spain.

The Centers for Disease Control says cases are showing up in the United States, South America, Europe and elsewhere.

Bao said scholars generally consider anisakiasis to be both underestimated and underdiagnosed. "Anyone who eats undercooked or raw fish or squid is at risk", the federal agency says on its website.

Anisakiasis can not be transmitted from one person to another. "This is actually the worm moving in the mouth or throat". Endoscopy showed a parasite firmly hitched in the upper gastrointestinal tract, removal of which resolved the condition in the patient nearly immediately. Both methods should kill any parasites that may be present.

Consumers can sometimes even remove the worms themselves, the CDC says. The European Union follows similar practices, according to Carmo.

Some people, though, will never give up eating their beloved sushi or other raw fish delights.

  • Joanne Flowers