Doctors have removed a 12cm long filarial worm from a patient’s eyelid. Image Credit: Aster Hospital

Dubai: In a rare surgery, doctors here removed a 12cm long filarial worm from a patient’s eyelid.

The patient, a 55-year-old Indian woman, came to Aster Hospital complaining of pain and swelling on her eyelid after having cleared all diagnostic tests.

Ophtalmologist Dr Vikram Mohindra diagnosed the swelling as the parasitic infection dirofilariasis that is caused by mosquito bites.

According to the Journal of Parasitic Diseases, there are 800 reported cases worldwide of dirofilariasis since it was first documented in 1885. However, there is an alarming concern of increased incidence and it is now considered an emerging zoonosis or disease coming from animals as per medical updates on the disease.

Leading a surgical team, Dr Mohindra successfully extracted the filarial worm and the patient’s eyelid was repaired and the patient has had full recovery, especially since the disease was caught at an early stage.

Dr Mohindra said: “Aster Hospital may be a relatively new hospital but we have already proven a high level of experience and expertise by dealing with this rare case which is a good example of encouraging patients to pay attention to what their bodies are telling them and have it checked by physicians when something is not normal — it can save lives.”

Patient Vineeta M. said: “I am truly grateful to Dr Mohindra for his keenness in taking up my case which proves to be a good call.

"It pays to trust your instincts — mine in seeking a second opinion and Dr Mohindra for investigating my case. My life is back to normal now and I can see without obstruction or discomfort.”