Doctors Warn Sushi Lovers of the Dangers Caused by Parasites In Raw, Undercooked Fish and Seafood

With the rise in popularity of sushi, doctors are warning of the dangers caused by parasites in raw or undercooked fish and seafood.

Infections from anisakidosis, a parasite found in sushi, are on the rise, says a new study in the journal BMJ Case Reports. It highlighted the story of a 32-year-old man from Portugal who had severe stomach pain, vomiting, and a weeklong fever. It was traced to a parasite known as anisakis, which he’d picked up from eating sushi.

Anisakidosis — formerly known as anisakiasis or anisakiosis, and also called herring worm disease — is a parasitic infection. It is caused by eating raw or undercooked fish or seafood infected with small anisakis worms.

Symptoms include:

In rare cases, it can be fatal. Most reported cases have been in Japan, where eating raw fish is common, but it is increasingly being seen in Western countries, the study says.

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Nicky Broyd