Reddish Brown Worm May be a Bloodworm but Man Worries About Parasites

Share the knowledge

Note: All About Worms is completely free, and reader-supported. If something that you find here helps you, please consider supporting us.
Click for amount options
Include a message for us!:

“Can you help me ID this worm?” asks this reader in his submission concerning the reddish brown creature pictured below. “I found it in the morning in my toilet before anyone had gone to the toilet.”

“I was worried it’s a parasite but am unsure”, he continues. “I am in the south of the UK. Thank you so much for your time and help!”

From the picture alone, we would guess that this is some type of bloodworm. ‘Bloodworm’ is actually an umbrella term that encompasses multiple species of worm-like creatures, all of which have one thing in common: their distinct red color. In particular, it is the reason they have this color that gives them this name; bloodworms produce an excess amount of hemoglobin, which is the molecule in red blood cells which carries oxygen. As a result, they are able to sustain for long periods in low-oxygen conditions, such as underwater.

Bloodworms are not dangerous to humans, no matter the species (as far as we know), and neither are they pests. However, it is not unheard of that they show up in people’s bathrooms. This is because a lot of species of bloodworms (such as the red midge fly larva, or the red wiggler) feed on decomposing matter, such as animal waste. For this reason, they often find themselves in the sewers and pipe systems that lead to people’s bathrooms.

What this may indicate is that there is a leak somewhere underground in our reader’s pipes. The most probable way that such a worm finds their way into someone’s bathroom is through a gap/hole in the pipes. Signs of a leak include smelly water, inconsistent or lowered water pressure, and discolored water. If our reader has cause to believe he may be experiencing a leak, he should contact a professional.

With all of that said, our reader did also mention that he is worried about parasites. So, if he has reasonable cause to suspect parasites (eg: the worm came from him, or he is experiencing symptoms), then we suggest consulting a medical parasitologist. Now, while we are a U.S. based organization, and so the following resources are U.S. based, we imagine that if our reader contacts them they could still be of help; also our reader could ask them if they are familiar with any counterparts where our reader is located.

So, what we can recommend is that our reader do one or more of the following:

1) Search for a medical parasitologist in his area using this directory of medical parasitology consultants: https://www.astmh.org/for-astmh-members/clinical-consultants-directory.
2) Search for a local parasitologist by doing a Google search for “medical parasitologist (name of the closest big city)” or “tropical medicine specialist (name of the closest big city)”.
3) Get in touch with Dr. Omar Amin at the Parasitology Center at https://www.parasitetesting.com.
4) Contact Dr. Vipul Savaliya of Infectious Disease Care (“IDCare”) at idcarepa.com.

We should note that both Dr. Amin and Dr. Savaliya are available for online consultation, so our reader does not need to be in the vicinity of their physical offices to get help!

To conclude, we think that the worm our reader found in his toilet is a bloodworm. Bloodworms are not dangerous, so our reader needs only move the worm outside and call it a day. That is unless he is genuinely concerned about parasites. In that case, he should disregard everything we said about bloodworms and instead consult a medical parasitologist.

Note: All About Worms is completely free, and reader-supported. If something that you find here helps you, please consider supporting us.
Click for amount options
Include a message for us!:
Summary
Reddish Brown Worm May be a Bloodworm but Man Worries About Parasites
Article Name
Reddish Brown Worm May be a Bloodworm but Man Worries About Parasites
Description
"Can you help me ID this worm?" asks this reader in his submission concerning the reddish brown creature pictured below. "I found it in the morning in my toilet before anyone had gone to the toilet."
Author

Share the knowledge

Author: Worm Researcher Anton

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *