Woman Discovers Three-inch-long Leech living In Her Nose
Daniela Liverani, a backpacker who suffered from persistent nosebleeds was horrified to discover ...
Daniela Liverani, a backpacker who suffered from persistent nosebleeds was horrified to discover they were caused by a three-inch-long leech which had been living up her nose for a month.
She had been travelling around south-east Asia when she was involved in a motorbike crash.
She had thought that a lump poking from the bottom of her nose was congealed blood from a burst blood vessel after the accident.
But just days after returning home to Edinburgh she was disgusted to find that it was the head of a huge leech which had started living in her nostril.
After first trying to blow the leech out, and grab it with her fingers, the graduate, 24, was rushed to A&E to have the creature removed with forceps and tweezers.
'When I was in the shower, he would come right out as far as my bottom lip and I could see him sticking out the bottom of my nose,' she said.
'So when that happened, I jumped out of the shower to look really closely in the mirror and I saw ridges on him. That's when I realised he was an animal.'
Miss Liverani said: 'It was agony - whenever the doctor grabbed him, I could feel the leech tugging at the inside of my nose.
'Then all of a sudden, after half an hour, the pain stopped and the doctor had the leech in the tweezers.
'He was about as long as my forefinger and as fat as my thumb.
'He could move so fast as well, which freaked me out. I've no idea how he got up there but he'd have got bigger and bigger from feeding on my blood.
'I asked the doctor what would've happened if I hadn't gone to hospital and she said he'd probably have worked his way into my brain.'
Mark Siddal, curator at the American Museum of Natural History in New York and an expert on leeches, said: 'Daniela could have picked up this leech from water in Vietnam, if she had been swimming.
'Or it could have gone in through her mouth, as she was drinking water.
'Even though it was there for around a month, these leeches don't grow all that quickly, so it wouldn't have been much smaller when it went up there.
'It would have been quite sizeable.