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Old 05-25-2012, 08:04 AM
 
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Interesting article on a science magazine about how doctors in certain parts around the globe (including north america) are seeing people for neurological symptons similar to epilepsy, blindness, partial paralyses, numbness etc. and so when they scan their brain's with MRI they are seeing areas infected with numerous cysts of the pork tapeworm (Taelia Solium) to which is normally foreign in human brains.

Looks like this problem is mostly in poor regions of the world i.e. south america and asia however still interesting to read about and also a photo of a human brain permeated with these tapeworms as well.

Anyone for some sausage and bacon for breakfast .

Hidden Epidemic: Tapeworms Living Inside Peoples Brains - Discover Magazine

Last edited by Six Foot Three; 05-25-2012 at 09:08 AM.. Reason: Changed - TALL Member
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Old 05-25-2012, 10:16 AM
 
Location: Sarasota, Florida
15,400 posts, read 20,016,779 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6 Foot 3 View Post
Interesting article on a science magazine about how doctors in certain parts around the globe (including north america) are seeing people for neurological symptons similar to epilepsy, blindness, partial paralyses, numbness etc. and so when they scan their brain's with MRI they are seeing areas infected with numerous cysts of the pork tapeworm (Taelia Solium) to which is normally foreign in human brains.

Looks like this problem is mostly in poor regions of the world i.e. south america and asia however still interesting to read about and also a photo of a human brain permeated with these tapeworms as well.

Anyone for some sausage and bacon for breakfast .

Hidden Epidemic: Tapeworms Living Inside Peoples Brains - Discover Magazine
Reminds me of why I like my Pork etcetera cooked WELL DONE!
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Old 05-25-2012, 04:03 PM
 
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Originally Posted by PITTSTON2SARASOTA View Post
Reminds me of why I like my Pork etcetera cooked WELL DONE!
Yeap smart thing to do as tapeworms are some nasty critters for sure .

However that being said there is research going on showing that we actually do need some types of parasites as we evolved with them in our guts as hunter gathere's for millions of years as they seem to calm down the leukocytes that monitor our gut. Infact there's clinical trials currently being conducted where as they are giving hookworms and whipworms to people with MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Asthma, Crones and Colitis to see if these worms can calm these autoimmune conditions .
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Old 05-25-2012, 04:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by 6 Foot 3 View Post
Yeap smart thing to do as tapeworms are some nasty critters for sure .

However that being said there is research going on showing that we actually do need some types of parasites as we evolved with them in our guts as hunter gathere's for millions of years as they seem to calm down the leukocytes that monitor our gut. Infact there's clinical trials currently being conducted where as they are giving hookworms and whipworms to people with MS, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Asthma, Crones and Colitis to see if these worms can calm these autoimmune conditions .
Remind me to decline any invitations to participate in such clinical trials. Regarding the hunter-gatherers from the past, it's worth noting they didn't generally have very long life expectancies. I suspect parasites made some contribution to that.
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Old 05-25-2012, 06:07 PM
 
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Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
Remind me to decline any invitations to participate in such clinical trials. Regarding the hunter-gatherers from the past, it's worth noting they didn't generally have very long life expectancies. I suspect parasites made some contribution to that.
If i have paralyses from multiple sclerosis and neither current medication or diet is helping then you bet i'd participate in a whipworm clinical trial.
Probiotic helminth administration in relapsing-re... [Mult Scler. 2011] - PubMed - NCBI

As for hunter gatherer's dying young because of parasites ... sorry but i don't believe that had much of an impact at all as their world and enviroment was incredibily tough and dangerous as if they weren't dying from the elements (winter, heat, floods) they had to contend on a daily basis on how and where to hunt/gather food to not die of starvation/thirst as well as survive constant attacks from predators as well survive from traumatic injuries etc. with no doctors, medicines, antibiotics, antiseptics etc. as i can imagine that infection and gangrene were a common death sentence for many of them.

Last edited by Six Foot Three; 05-25-2012 at 06:20 PM.. Reason: Re-worded - 6 ft 3
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Old 05-25-2012, 10:34 PM
 
5,366 posts, read 8,363,922 times
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Originally Posted by 6 Foot 3 View Post
If i have paralyses from multiple sclerosis and neither current medication or diet is helping then you bet i'd participate in a whipworm clinical trial.
Probiotic helminth administration in relapsing-re... [Mult Scler. 2011] - PubMed - NCBI

As for hunter gatherer's dying young because of parasites ... sorry but i don't believe that had much of an impact at all as their world and enviroment was incredibily tough and dangerous as if they weren't dying from the elements (winter, heat, floods) they had to contend on a daily basis on how and where to hunt/gather food to not die of starvation/thirst as well as survive constant attacks from predators as well survive from traumatic injuries etc. with no doctors, medicines, antibiotics, antiseptics etc. as i can imagine that infection and gangrene were a common death sentence for many of them.
My comment was that I think it could've certainly made some contribution to shorter longevity, because as you said they didn't have doctors, medicines, etc. Although parasites were not necessarily the only cause of dying young, they would have presented yet another risk. Whipworms appear to be more common among pets, especially dogs, but they can be transmitted to humans. I don't know if an infection from whipworms can potentially lead to death in humans.

On the other hand parasites like tapeworms and hookworms can have the potential to cause death in humans if left untreated. As far as I can determine, parasites like these are often associated with fecal contamination. Exactly how sanitary early humans were a million or so years ago is pretty doubtful, nor would you have to look that far back. The risk would've been present. Although humans did manage to survive, they still had relatively much shorter life spans compared to today. They lived long enough to reproduce.

I'm not suggesting that such parasites were the the leading cause of death among early humans, but I still think it would've been another contributing hazard early humans would've been subjected to. It's not so much that the worms themselves necessarily are a direct cause of death, but rather can be carriers of infections and disease, in the same sense that some types of mosquitoes are carriers of malaria, etc., ticks, fleas, and what have you. Some tapeworms have been known to become massive enough to completely block the intestinal tract.

As you pointed out, early humans would not have had the benefit of modern medical treatment or hospitals. Among other hazards early humans would've faced a few million years ago, and not even that far back, were numerous predators, weather, injuries and infections we might see as slight risks today. Hunters would have faced the risk of injury or death going after large animals for food, hides and bones. While humans did survive, it's a pretty safe guess to say that life was extremely hard. Infant mortality would've likely been higher than it is today. A person managing to survive into their 30s would've probably been considered pretty old.

Regarding tapeworms, see Description:
"In contrast to a typical tapeworm infection, which may not be associated with symptoms, neurocysticercosis is a serious condition that may cause seizures and is potentially life-threatening."
Tapeworm Diseases - definition of Tapeworm Diseases in the Medical dictionary - by the Free Online Medical Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.

Regarding hookworms, see Causes and Symptoms:
hookworm disease - definition of hookworm disease in the Medical dictionary - by the Free Online Medical Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.

As a note, that you mentioned clinical trials, that's a part of testing under controlled conditions in order to determine if such a treatment can be deemed effective as a recommended treatment, but it's not yet a sure thing. I agree that if current medications and treatment are not effective for certain conditions, then a clinical trial may be worth a shot.
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Old 05-25-2012, 11:14 PM
 
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I read this the other day as well. It seems like another 'flavor of the month' health scare. In the US, this is all but non-existent. 220 deaths in 12 years is not exactly anything to get excited about considering that influenza kills more than 35,000 people per year. The fact is, the life cycle of this parasite exists between humans and pigs in 3rd world countries. That cycle doesn't exist here except in some very isolated, jerkwater instances. Cook your pork to 140 degrees for 5 minutes and/or deep freeze it for a day. Any issues that probably don't exist anyway will certainly not exist if you do this.
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Old 05-26-2012, 05:00 AM
 
13,138 posts, read 37,324,951 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NightBazaar View Post
My comment was that I think it could've certainly made some contribution to shorter longevity, because as you said they didn't have doctors, medicines, etc. Although parasites were not necessarily the only cause of dying young, they would have presented yet another risk. Whipworms appear to be more common among pets, especially dogs, but they can be transmitted to humans. I don't know if an infection from whipworms can potentially lead to death in humans.

On the other hand parasites like tapeworms and hookworms can have the potential to cause death in humans if left untreated. As far as I can determine, parasites like these are often associated with fecal contamination. Exactly how sanitary early humans were a million or so years ago is pretty doubtful, nor would you have to look that far back. The risk would've been present. Although humans did manage to survive, they still had relatively much shorter life spans compared to today. They lived long enough to reproduce.

I'm not suggesting that such parasites were the the leading cause of death among early humans, but I still think it would've been another contributing hazard early humans would've been subjected to. It's not so much that the worms themselves necessarily are a direct cause of death, but rather can be carriers of infections and disease, in the same sense that some types of mosquitoes are carriers of malaria, etc., ticks, fleas, and what have you. Some tapeworms have been known to become massive enough to completely block the intestinal tract.

As you pointed out, early humans would not have had the benefit of modern medical treatment or hospitals. Among other hazards early humans would've faced a few million years ago, and not even that far back, were numerous predators, weather, injuries and infections we might see as slight risks today. Hunters would have faced the risk of injury or death going after large animals for food, hides and bones. While humans did survive, it's a pretty safe guess to say that life was extremely hard. Infant mortality would've likely been higher than it is today. A person managing to survive into their 30s would've probably been considered pretty old.

Regarding tapeworms, see Description:
"In contrast to a typical tapeworm infection, which may not be associated with symptoms, neurocysticercosis is a serious condition that may cause seizures and is potentially life-threatening."
Tapeworm Diseases - definition of Tapeworm Diseases in the Medical dictionary - by the Free Online Medical Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.

Regarding hookworms, see Causes and Symptoms:
hookworm disease - definition of hookworm disease in the Medical dictionary - by the Free Online Medical Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.

As a note, that you mentioned clinical trials, that's a part of testing under controlled conditions in order to determine if such a treatment can be deemed effective as a recommended treatment, but it's not yet a sure thing. I agree that if current medications and treatment are not effective for certain conditions, then a clinical trial may be worth a shot.
I'm definitely not implying that all or most parasites are good for humans as that's part of the reason why i posted this thread about tapeworms and i do know that many parasites can cause sickness and disease however that being said parasites and/or their eggs are ubiquitous in our outdoor enviroment and have been before we humans arrived and so we ''evolved'' with them over the hundreds of thousands of years in co-existence as we (science) are starting to now realise that we need certain strains of bacteria and/or parasites for health hence ''probiotics'' formulas as one example.

I read a study not too long back about how kids who play outside in the dirt etc. which exposes them to certain strains of parasites and bacteria helps to prevent them from aquiring autoimmune diseases and psyche disorders as adults compared to ''sterile'' kids who mostly stayed indoors through out their childhoods as that tells me that as humans we evolved with many of the earths microscopic critters.

I think this article relates to what i was implying beforehand.
Are We Too Clean? Is Dirt Good For Kids? - Web MD

Last edited by Six Foot Three; 05-26-2012 at 05:24 AM.. Reason: Re-worded - 6 ft 3
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Old 05-26-2012, 12:06 PM
 
Location: SW MO
662 posts, read 1,039,741 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 6 Foot 3 View Post
Interesting article on a science magazine about how doctors in certain parts around the globe (including north america) are seeing people for neurological symptons similar to epilepsy, blindness, partial paralyses, numbness etc. and so when they scan their brain's with MRI they are seeing areas infected with numerous cysts of the pork tapeworm (Taelia Solium) to which is normally foreign in human brains.

Looks like this problem is mostly in poor regions of the world i.e. south america and asia however still interesting to read about and also a photo of a human brain permeated with these tapeworms as well.

Anyone for some sausage and bacon for breakfast .

Hidden Epidemic: Tapeworms Living Inside Peoples Brains - Discover Magazine
The reason medical professionals in this country are seeing more neurocysticercosis (the medical term for T. solium larva in the brain) is because people from those poor regions of the world, mainly Central and South America, are immigrating to the U.S. in large numbers in the past couple of decades and bringing these conditions with them. Previously immigrants went to large cities when they came and the docs that did intake physicals and provided their care would see these kinds of diseases, while docs in suburbs and rural areas did not. Now a lot of the immigrants move to smaller cities and towns due to a big "town anchor" employer being there hiring them. Now these docs are seeing these conditions for the first time, and probably why it is making news.
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Old 05-27-2012, 04:45 AM
 
Location: in your dreams
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I tried discussing this a while back in the health forum - to no avail.

People really seem to think this only affects "poor people" from "3rd world countries"...
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