A girl who was hospitalized in Florida complaining of agonizing stomach pains was discovered to have a belly full of tapeworms, which her mother allegedly made her eat so the girl could lose weight for a beauty pageant. Hospital nurses first believed the girl might be pregnant when she was admitted to the emergency room with severe stomach pain. However, an ultrasound image showed her intestines to be swollen, and a trip to the toilet revealed the real source of her pain, the Independent reported.
“It was a toilet bowl full of tapeworms,” Maricar Cabral-Osorio, a nurse who helped take care of the girl, said on an episode of the television program, “Untold Stories of the E.R.” The nurse added: “It was so gross ... There were a couple [of tapeworms] that were very long and wiggling around trying to get out of the toilet bowl.”
The news drew public attention after the Discovery Fit & Health channel showed the episode, United Press International reported. During the episode, it emerged that the mother had forced the daughter to eat tapeworm eggs she bought in Mexico so the girl would lose weight before a beauty pageant. “We were wondering, ‘How did she get those tapeworms?’ And then you saw the mom turn white,” Cabral-Osorio said.
“The mom was apologizing to the girl. It’s like, ‘I’m so sorry. You know, I did it just to make you a little skinnier. You needed some help before we went on the pageant,’” Cabral-Osorio said.
It is not known whether the mother faced criminal charges.