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Larval Echinococcus granulosus, light micrograph.
Let’s do another story.
There was a cancer patient who had one day, in the middle of her chemo, discovered a mass in her breast. Thinking this was a tumor, the doctors decided to go in and do a biopsy. The surgeon cut just a little bit below the mass, expecting to do a regular biopsy, when a hydatid cyst full of tiny dog tapeworm larvae explodes out of the incision. The surgeon freaks out and sucks most of them up but manages to save enough to send to the lab to make a diagnosis.
What the heck? Let’s look into the history.
Not too long ago, her dog had died of unexplained seizures (no autopsy). Turns out, she had been in Aruba not too long ago and one of the two got infected and passed it on. When she went onto chemotherapy, it knocked out her immune system enough that the parasite began to flourish.