A scientist let a parasite grow inside her in the name of science


You don’t have to be male to have testicular fortitude. Phil Baroni taught me that and despite being a big fan of Middle Easy, I’ve never even met the guy. C’mon Phil, get your act together. If you ever happen to be in Scotland and want to drink whisky like a real man and take a look at the work which inspired The American Declaration of Independence then holler at me. In fact, that goes for all of you. Come to think of it, I have no idea why Phil would be reading this, an article about a scientist who was batsh*t crazy enough to let a sand flea live inside her foot so she could study it’s mating habits

Yep, in an act of altruism, she donated a tiny space in her foot to a happenstance science project. The crazy thing about this to me is that this wasn’t even an area she was interested in! Ok, so she was studying this species of flea, but her research was focused on the tungiasis infection which sand fleas spread when they bury into your foot to mate and lay eggs and live off your blood. Which is about as disgusting as you’re gonna get aside from those things that swim up your urine stream when you pee in the river and get inside your urethra.

So, what did she learn? Surprisingly, not letting a parasite live inside you resulting in your foot getting swollen, infected and painfully itchy was something she already knew prior to this experiment. Doctors now know that they can live inside a human for longer than first thought, and that the flea will most likely mate when the female is already inside the host, as she only had one and never got any more. Was her sheer dedication to the advancement of science worth it? You decide, I’m gonna take a shower. After reading this story, I suddenly feel unclean.


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