Luis Ortiz doesn’t remember much about that fateful September day when he almost lost his life because of a “wiggling” worm in his brain.
The 26-year-old California resident was skateboarding near his parents’ home in Napa when the headaches he’d been having for several days suddenly intensified. After Ortiz returned home, he felt disoriented and began vomiting.
“That’s where it gets kind of blurry for me,” he told the Napa Valley Register.
Ortiz’s mother rushed him to the hospital, but his condition steadily worsened. Ortiz fell into a coma and doctors were forced to create a small hole in his head to drain his swollen brain.
After a series of tests, the cause of the swelling was pinpointed: There was a live tapeworm larva trapped deep inside Ortiz’s brain.
“It was still wiggling and moving around,” Ortiz told the Los Angeles Times.