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A woman in China found out the hard way why washing your hands, especially after cuddling your pets, is very important.
The 28-year-old woman had been suffering from a swollen eye, and found a small worm wriggling inside her eyeball.
The woman, surnamed Wong, loves to play with her pet dog after work.
Since she regularly gave the dog baths, she assumed that it was clean and parasite free and did see it necessary to wash her hands after playing with the pet.
However, Wong's eye started to get red, and she initially though this was because sand or dirt had affected it.
She also neglected this as it was not painful and itchy, which proved to be a big mistake.
A few days later, she awoke to find that her eye was in bad shape, and took a closer look in the mirror.
She was shocked to find a thread-like object wiggling just under the surface of her eyeball.
Wong immediately sought medical attention, and the doctor discovered a 2cm worm inside her eyeball.
The doctor diagnosed that she had contracted thelaziosis, also known as oriental eyeworm, which is a form of infection caused by a parasitic eyeworm.
After removing the worm from the eyeball, the doctor also washed and disinfected Wong's eye as the eyeworm is know to lay eggs on the eye membrane.
The parasite is known to infect animals commonly kept as pets like cats, dogs and rabbits.
Common symptoms of an infection include eye irritation, watery eyes, conjunctivitis or corneal ulcers.
So please ensure that you wash your hands regularly, especially after you play with your pets.