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Woman's Eye Infection Turns Out To Be Bees Feeding On Her Tears

Have you ever had an itch in your eye and become super paranoid that there's a bug in there?

99 times out of 100, it's just pollen, dust, or maybe a stray eyelash. It might take a bit of finesse —or eye drops — to get it out without causing more irritation, but you're unlikely to need a trip to the doctor to help.

But that 1 time out of 100 is a doozy.

In this case, doctors are pretty sure something similar has never been documented before. It was so unusual that doctors actually held a press conference!

The patient has been identified only by her last name: He.

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She checked into Fooyin University Hospital in Taiwan, suffering from extreme pain and swelling in her eye.

Initially, she was admitted for cellulitis, a bacterial skin infection, and keratitis, inflammation of the cornea.

Dr. Hung Chi-ting, the hospital's head of ophthalmology got a shock during examination.

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Tiny insect legs were wriggling around and in the end, he extracted four small bees from He's eye.

Yes. Bees.

The bees were burrowed up under He's swollen eyelid, where they were happily drinking from her tears ducts.

And yes, the bees were all still alive, but that was actually a good thing.

Had He rubbed at her eye too much, she could have squashed them.

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And dead bees in your eye socket have a ton more possible complications, including more serious infections and even possibly blindness.

The bees are a species called "sweat bees," and are thankfully non-aggressive.

Wikipedia | Didier Descouens

They're tiny and attracted to the salt in human sweat. Since tears are also salty, they must have thought they'd hit the jackpot. Sweat bees are most often found around grave sites and fallen trees.

It was likely that they got into He's eye as she visited and pulled weeds at a family grave site.

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She'd felt irritation after the visit and had flushed her eye with water, assuming that it was just some dirt.

But by later that evening, she was in a lot of pain and decided to see a doctor.

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Good thing she did!

In the press conference, Dr. Hung used the opportunity to remind those who tend family grave sites to take precautions against pests, such as wearing gloves and goggles.

h/t: AsiaOne, INSIDER