Four bees found living in woman's eye, feeding off tear ducts

11 April, 2019, 00:47 | Author: Sue Mclaughlin
  • Doctors discover four live bees feeding on tears inside woman's eye

In what is believed to be a "world first", doctors at Taiwan's Fooyin University Hospital described in a press conference how they had then spotted the small insects crawling around her eye socket during an examination.

But nope. It was bees.

Assuming that sand or dirt had gotten into her eye, she said that she cleaned her eye with water at the time. Again, no, it was bees.

The sweat bee feeds off nectar and pollen, but is also drawn to human perspiration, which provides "precious moisture and salts", according to the Missouri Department of Conservation.

Be warned: the photo below is not for the faint of heart.

A doctor found four bees living inside a woman's eye in Taiwan.

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A closeup of a sweat bee, which is the size of a sesame seed.

But hours later, her eyes were still swollen and in pain, leading her to seek medical help at the hospital in southern Taiwan. Hung said that sweat bees commonly live in the mountains or near graves, which explained how they flew into the woman's eye. The insects are attracted to sweat and can also drink tears, which are rich in protein, according to a study by the Kansas Entomological Society.

Her eyesight was saved but she suffered cellulitis (a bacterial skin infection) and keratitis (inflammation of the cornea).

"Thankfully she came to the hospital early, otherwise I might have had to take her eyeball out to save her life", Hung told reporters. Local media reported the woman said she was pulling weeds at the grave when something became stuck in her eye.

The insects were later identified as sweat bees, according to Asia One. "If she did she could have induced the bees to produce venom ... she could have gone blind". Fortunately, the woman recovered 80% of her vision after being hospitalised for five days.

The bees are still alive and have been sent to another organization so they can be studied.

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