A HOMELESS man’s brain was left “hanging out” of his skull after a parasitic invasion ate away at his head.
The man, named as Jhonatan de Jesus Castro Silva, has reportedly been living on the streets of Soledad, Colombia, after his parents died two year ago.
The man is reportedly suffering from myiasis, a parasitic infestation by maggots[/caption]
A video, shared by local newspaper El Ambito, shows Silva walking the streets and a gaping cavity in the back of his skull has left his brain visible.
The newspaper reports that Silva is suffering from myiasis, a parasitic infestation by maggots, which grow inside the body as they feed on its tissue.
Silva is understood to have has fallen into drug abuse and left begging on the streets.
His parents reportedly died two years ago and local chief of police Javier Cardenas says the authorities have tried to help Silva.
‘Don’t let him die’
He said: “He has been taken to an assistance centre three times where around 4,000 maggots were removed, then he escaped from hospital and went back to the streets, to being homeless.”
Silva’s aunt told local media her nephew needs medical help because he is like a “walking dead body and I ask authorities not to let him die”.
El Ambito journalist Javier Diaz says Silva, who has been nicknamed “the zombie” by locals, became nervous and aggressive when he was interviewed.
The man’s aunt hopes the authorities can provide him with specialised treatment.
What is myiasis and how is it treated?
Myiasis is the infestation of fly larvae – maggots – in humans or animals.
Maggots can feed on the host’s living or dead tissue, liquid body substance, or ingested food.
The distribution of human myiasis is worldwide, with more species and greater abundance in poor socioeconomic regions of tropical and subtropical countries.
In countries where it is not endemic, myiasis is an important condition, where it can represent the fourth most common travel-associated skin disease.
There are different types of the condition, including wound myiasis which is when the fly larvae infest open injuries.
A lack of hygiene and poverty are usually to blame and research has found a lack of adequate medical care of the elderly, psychiatric patients, alcoholics, and other helpless patients, especially those with the inability to discourage flies from depositing eggs or larvae, also makes humans prone to wound infestation.
Treatment usually requires the removal of all visible larvae, followed by removing the damaged tissue.
Source: Clinical Microbiology Reviews
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Local media report he was taken to a hospital in the city of Barranquilla, with paramedics having to sedate him to be able to take him there.
But he is understood to have tried to escape the hospital in his first night but he was caught.
It is unclear if the wound on his head will be operated on.
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