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An Australian woman spent more than seven years looking for answers about her mystery illness to find its cause was a parasite she contracted on holiday in Thailand. Tess Swift, from Ocean Grove in Victoria, woke up in the middle of the night in excruciating abdominal pain and nausea a few weeks after she returned …

The story Aussie woman’s mystery illness diagnosed 7 years after holiday to Thailand as seen on Thaiger News.

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Young people on their year out often want to try local cuisine under local conditions, without realizing the dangers of uncooked or poorly cooked street food here. Never touch it myself.  As for the diagnosis after so many years, nothing surprises me about the incompetence and lack of knowledge of NHS Doctors.  They didn't diagnose my first case of Dengue Fever despite having classic symptoms, and telling them that I had just returned from Asia.  She is lucky the penny dropped with that lot at all.

Cue lots of comments of how the UK NHS is wonderful; it just isn't.  

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This is the result of engulfing everything that is advertised as exotic cuisine. Even animals will not eat what is not suitable for them to consume. Not sure why some humans lost their common sense when comes to what they can swallow and what they can't.

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Two questions:

Didn't she tell the doctors she travelled to a tropical destination first time she had the symptoms?

Did it really take the doctors 7 years before checking the possibility of a parasyte?

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On 1/10/2023 at 3:17 PM, Soidog said:

I don’t like too many controls in society unless it is for the greater good, or for safety reasons. I can’t think of a more obvious decision than to ban alcohol on flights. We banned smoking years ago (even though the airlines still insist on announcing its a non-smoking flight!) on the basis of safety, yet we allow a drug like alcohol to be consumed. 
 

Of course having a glass (plastic cup) of wine can be nice with a meal, but some people go too far. 
 

The only downside is that some people would drink more before a flight if they knew non on board. What then? Ban alcohol at airports? People then drink down the road and turn up late for flights…….. Basically, it’s not metal detectors we need at airport security. It’s A-Hole detectors we need. 

 

4 hours ago, Pinetree said:

Young people on their year out often want to try local cuisine under local conditions, without realizing the dangers of uncooked or poorly cooked street food here. Never touch it myself.  As for the diagnosis after so many years, nothing surprises me about the incompetence and lack of knowledge of NHS Doctors.  They didn't diagnose my first case of Dengue Fever despite having classic symptoms, and telling them that I had just returned from Asia.  She is lucky the penny dropped with that lot at all.

Cue lots of comments of how the UK NHS is wonderful; it just isn't.  

She was Australian and received treatment in Australia. So this is on the Australian health service. The son of a friend of mine came back from Thailand with a parasitic infection some 15 years ago. Like the poor girl in this story it was a life changing event. The source of his infection was a resort swimming pool down south. As recently as last year doctors were entertaining the idea of removing one of his ribs to fashion a jawbone from, where the parasite has most recently made its home.

 

on another note a mate came to CM in 2019 to visit me before heading of to the United States. On the plane to the US, he began to feel swelling and pain in his leg. A quick diagnosis by local doctors upon landing, identified cellulitis. Which can kill you. They suspected he may have contracted it by  absorbing contaminated water via a cut or open wound. Something as simple as walking through a puddle in open toed shoes.

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7 minutes ago, Khunmark said:

She was Australian and received treatment in Australia. So this is on the Australian health service. The son of a friend of mine came back from Thailand with a parasitic infection some 15 years ago. Like the poor girl in this story it was a life changing event. The source of his infection was a resort swimming pool down south. As recently as last year doctors were entertaining the idea of removing one of his ribs to fashion a jawbone from, where the parasite has most recently made its home.

on another note a mate came to CM in 2019 to visit me before heading of to the United States. On the plane to the US, he began to feel swelling and pain in his leg. A quick diagnosis by local doctors upon landing, identified cellulitis. Which can kill you. They suspected he may have contracted it by  absorbing contaminated water via a cut or open wound. Something as simple as walking through a puddle in open toed shoes.

My bad, but it seems that the Aussie Health Service is maybe no better than the UK NHS. 

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2 hours ago, Pinetree said:

My bad, but it seems that the Aussie Health Service is maybe no better than the UK NHS. 

Both public and private health systems have been beset by problems. The premiums in the private system are largely unaffordable and you are still required to pay a” gap” fee for certain procedures

The public system is underfunded and many G.P. clinics are having to charge consultation fees (which were once fee under bulk billing arrangements) to cover their costs. There is also no articulation between clinics and hospitals. What’s more elective surgery wait times for some procedures have ballooned out to over 12 months.

The Albanese government is looking to address these ongoing issues as part of its election promises and has already capped the fees on prescription medications to $21 under the pharmaceutical benefit scheme. The PBS is godsend for those who require a constant supply of medication or require expensive drugs. 
 

perhaps the biggest issue is the health care job descriptions are written. Doctors and nurses alike are highly trained and are capable of performing services way beyond their current profile. Until there is a more compatible match between what they do and what the can do the gains will be modest.

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It is not easy to diagnose parasitic infections. It is not as if there is a one test fits all. Lab tests will examine a stool sample, but there are not always eggs or signs of the parasite. The serological test may show that there is something, but it isn't specific. Parasites can go dormant and not show symptoms for years. They just burrow into a vital organ and stay there until ready to reproduce. 

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"

17 minutes ago, Faraday said:

Seven years until a diagnosis is reached...? Seems an excessively long time. Surely, as Al says, didn't she mention that she'd been to a tropical country?

Anyway, here's an interesting article about Parasite Diagnosis:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7119917/

"Parasitic diseases generally develop chronically, and most patients experience non-specific symptoms and show unobvious physical signs." - just about sums it up......however Australia is home to similar parasitic diseases unlike the temperate European countries.

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13 minutes ago, cowslip said:

however Australia is home to similar parasitic diseases unlike the temperate European countries.

Yes, & as she is in Australia, it does seem a bit - or rather a lot, mystifying.

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I am going on 5 months of diarrhea with intermittent hospital stays and they still have no diagnosis... surprising that there isn't more reports of "food poisoning" given the lack of santation. 

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12 hours ago, Pinetree said:

My bad, but it seems that the Aussie Health Service is maybe no better than the UK NHS. 

It is everywhere. The morals of becoming a doctor has significantly been reduced for personal monetary gains. Of course there are good doctors out there but few. 

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14 hours ago, Vigo said:

It is not easy to diagnose parasitic infections. It is not as if there is a one test fits all. Lab tests will examine a stool sample, but there are not always eggs or signs of the parasite. The serological test may show that there is something, but it isn't specific. Parasites can go dormant and not show symptoms for years. They just burrow into a vital organ and stay there until ready to reproduce. 

On top of this, gnathostomiasis is even more tricky to find, given that the larvae does not mature in our body like more common parasitosis and so it does not stick in a particular place, rather wandering around the body.

She was pretty lucky indeed, who knows how many others have the same without knowing it.

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10 hours ago, cowslip said:

"

"Parasitic diseases generally develop chronically, and most patients experience non-specific symptoms and show unobvious physical signs." - just about sums it up......however Australia is home to similar parasitic diseases unlike the temperate European countries.

Not really. There’s only one doctor in Australia that specialises in gnathostomiasis, such is its rarity.

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15 minutes ago, Khunmark said:

Not really. There’s only one doctor in Australia that specialises in gnathostomiasis, such is its rarity.

Got a link for that?

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57 minutes ago, Faraday said:

Got a link for that?

Probably Dr Andrew Fuller from the Alfred Hospital’s Department of Infectious Diseases.

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1 hour ago, Khunmark said:

Not really. There’s only one doctor in Australia that specialises in gnathostomiasis, such is its rarity.

 

Gnathostomiasis in remote northern Western Australia: the first confirmed cases acquired in Australia

You miss the point - you don't need a specialist, you need diagnosis....... the whole point of a healthcare system is to initially try and find out what you suspect the problem is then call in the specialist.

This is in fact a major problem with the Thai healthcare system is they have no proper GPs etc, hover in Australia they do and this sort of thing shouldn't be overlooked.

 

In Oz they have this disease here is a paper from 2011 outlining some cases.

“Gnathostomiasis in remote northern Western Australia: the first confirmed cases acquired in Australia” ….

https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2011/195/1/gnathostomiasis-remote-northern-western-australia-first-confirmed-cases-acquired

 

 

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40 minutes ago, cowslip said:

Gnathostomiasis in remote northern Western Australia: the first confirmed cases acquired in Australia

You miss the point - you don't need a specialist, you need diagnosis....... the whole point of a healthcare system is to initially try and find out what you suspect the problem is then call in the specialist.

This is in fact a major problem with the Thai healthcare system is they have no proper GPs etc, hover in Australia they do and this sort of thing shouldn't be overlooked.

In Oz they have this disease here is a paper from 2011 outlining some cases.

“Gnathostomiasis in remote northern Western Australia: the first confirmed cases acquired in Australia” ….

https://www.mja.com.au/journal/2011/195/1/gnathostomiasis-remote-northern-western-australia-first-confirmed-cases-acquired

With a comparitively simple patient presentation, a GP can & does make the diagnosis. If the patient doesn't respond to treatment & the ailment gets worse, then they are referred to a Specialist.

There are GP's in Thailand.

https://www.justlanded.com/english/Thailand/Articles/Health/Visiting-a-doctor-in-Thailand

The patient in the OP wasn't the first to have a tardy diagnosis. This case took 6 years.

http://outbreaknewstoday.com/gnathostomiasis-identified-cause-australian-teens-illness-years-infection-78064/

 

 

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12 minutes ago, cowslip said:

There is no GP system in Thailand.

How do you come to that wrong conclusion?  There are many private general practitioners in Thailand.  They often term themselves as operating Clinics, but they are un affiliated and operate as GP surgeries, just like, for example, in the UK . 

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