Say hello to ascaris lumbricoides otherwise known as the large roundworm. Aside from looking like chicken chow mein this little fella has the unique distinction of being one of the larger intestinal parasitic worms capable of infecting humans.
Overall, they aren’t a huge threat to your health although they are the most common parasitic worm in the human population. They’re easy to cure, easy to detect, and their effects are reversible even at the latest stage.
They also have quite a strange life. They infect you when you drink unclean water. Their microscopic larvae burrow into your gastrointestinal tract where they bypass some mucus barriers and end up in your blood stream.
Once in your blood they arrive at your heart and then catch a ride to their lungs. They then get breathed out of your lungs but get stuck in your throaty mucus where, after being swallowed, they wind right back up in your lower intestine.
No one knows why they take such a weird route around the body, but it’s suspected it’s because they used to have more complex life-cycles that have slowly simplified overtime.
But for all their quirks, that doesn’t necessarily stop them from being pure nightmare fuel. Oh no. Because there are always worst-case scenarios despite them relatively easy to avoid.
Because these worms breed within a human host (which is quite rare because parasites typically move between hosts) it is possible for a person to keep breathing, and swallowing, the same population of worms over and over and over. They breed with each iteration, and despite starting off quite small, they do eventually grow to a good length and girth within the colon. If you acquire enough of these little fellas, well, your colon ends up packed full of writhing living worms. This can cause blockages and even result in life-threatening conditions.
Eventually, the best solution is to just cut you open and physically remove the parasites. The video below demonstrates this at its most simple and gory.
We warn you, the following is NSFW.
So there you have it. Parasites are disgusting, there are endless ways for nature to make you suffer, and no matter how benign something may appear, if you leave a health condition unchecked it can totally grow into a disproportionate monster of misery and suffering.