One of the latest medical cases published in the BMJ Case Report, where a man comes with a strange intestinal parasite, reminds us of the importance of doing all kinds of sexual relations or games safely.
This study describes the diagnosis of a 67-year-old man with an infection Entamoeba histolytica, which turned out to be transmitted during sex. This is not a strange infection, in fact, about 50 million people worldwide have been infected with this potentially lethal form of amoeba, usually as a result of ingesting contaminated food or water in areas where the parasite is endemic.
Other forms of infection usually occur because protozoan cysts can also camp on the ground or under dirty nails, find their way with unsuspecting people who put their hands in their mouths.
However, so in our organism, that E. histolytica It can easily replicate in the intestine before returning to the environment located in the host's feces. In the rarest cases, amoeba decides to stay and attack the intestinal lining to walk through the bloodstream and visit other organs, including the lungs, brain and liver.
Fortunately for many countries, public sanitation itself makes pathogens almost impossible to collect from local food and water supplies from developed countries. That's why this case surprised the doctors.
It is a patient in France with bloody diarrhea, low fever and liver abscess. The pathology test then confirms that the amoeba causing the disease is the culprit. However, he presents a rare example of patients with forms of intestinal and liver disease, something that is not so common in the medical literature.
In addition, and perhaps the strangest thing about this case, is the form of transmission: patients never set foot outside Europe. Researching their case found that the man had a sexual partner who recently traveled everywhere, from South America to India, Burma, Vietnam and Laos.
In addition, the details of the case known to doctors that the woman in turn had an intimate relationship with another man who was diagnosed with intestinal amebiasis (how they knew, or how she knew, should be another case study).
It so happens that, in the medical literature, it is unusual for amoeba to be transmitted between individuals who are sexually involved with same-sex couples. A series of studies published in 2012 illustrate how parasites appear as penile boils in men who have anal sex.
However, cases collected from heterosexual couples are very rare. And even though the woman has no symptoms, it is considered the most likely source of infection. The big question that remains to be answered, how do amoeba make their way between the hosts?
This study seems to leave the door open to our imagination only referring to "heterosexual sexual relations", so if there is some kind of pre-game, it might be very creative, which can allow parasites to move from House, "his mouth" (the doctors) hasn't left.
Like for yourself E. Histolytica, the case investigators explained that:
For people who have traveled to endemic areas, amoebiasis can be considered in addition to syphilis, HIV, hepatitis B and C when sexually transmitted infections are analyzed.
The good news of this case is that patients recover without problems. Luckily if we take into account that around 100,000 people worldwide die from amebiasis every year, especially in developing countries with inadequate water treatment programs.
This case is also a perfect example of the importance of doing all kinds of sexual games safely, or maybe just by applying common sense. [BMJ Case Reports vía ScienceAlert]