Teen Who Was Paralyzed After Eating Slug Succumbed To Complications
Who would dare to eat a disgusting and slimy slug, right? Unfortunately, there is but one man, who, out of peer pressure, gave in from a dare and swallowed a shell-less mollusk.
Sam Ballard, was only 19 at that time when his friends dare him to eat a garden mollusc out of fun. Unfortunately, another challenge gone wrong, the slimy slug was infected with rat lungworm, which paralyzes Sam Ballard from the head down. Almost eight years have passed, Ballard finally succumbed in his condition at Sydney hospital surrounded by his family and friends on November 5.
What happened to Ballard is caused by the parasite known as Angiostrongylus cantonensis or commonly known as the rat lungworm. This kind of parasite, as stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC, are present in raw or undercooked slugs, insects, freshwater shrimp, crabs, and frogs.
Once the parasite enters the body, it would go directly to the central nervous system and infect the meninges, according to FlipScience. Symptoms of this health condition include neck pain, headache, hyperesthesia (over-sensitivity of senses) and visual disturbances.
Sources claimed that the ex-rugby player's final last words were to express his love and gratitude towards his mother. He was heard saying "I love you" to his mother several times.
What Ballard did at the party became the brink that changed his life forever. From a healthy active sports-minded teenager, he contracted several complications that eventually led him into a coma for more than one year. Every hope and dream he has seem to slowly fade away until the very day he died. But no matter his situation was, through thick or thin, his family and friends, never gave him up and bravely fought the battle for him, as posted by Inquirer.
His mother Katie was the very person who took care of him throughout these years. The Australian government was able to finance his medication for a couple of years until they decided to cut their funding. After this, his mom was the one who tried to juggle their financial resources to balance his medication and their family's needs.
Jimmy Galvin, one of his friends who indulge him in doing the dare, shared the moment they asked forgiveness for what they have done. Their friend was just "crying his eyes out" throughout that moment. Galvin also added how their friend's mother has never been rude to them. She never blamed them or mistreat them for what they did to her son.